Tamil Nadu: Govt appeals transport employees to come back for work
07 January, 2018, 01:15 | Author: Tina Rodriquez
The private bus operators who were hoping to cash in on the flash strike by the government employees were left scratching their heads when very few passengers turned up.
Taking a serious view of the strike called by certain transport unions, the Madras High Court said the workers should get back to work or "face consequences", including termination and contempt of court.
The bench said it was the duty of the state to ensure and protect rights of its citizens during such circumstances.
Meanwhile, Vijaybhaskar today appealed to striking workers to return to work.
Transport workers have been demanding for a pay revision to Rs 30,000.
"The alternative measures that are being taken by the government will only worsen the problem". "We are yet to receive a copy of the high court order".
He also said they have not received any communication from the court about ending their strike. "More than 50 % of buses are operated in Coimbatore", collector T N Hariharan said.
He expressed regret over the hardship being caused to people in the wake of the strike.
Many politicians and celebrities including DMK working president M K Stalin, actors Kamal Haasan and Vishal have raised their voice in support of the transport workers and asked the government to solve the issue in a democratic manner.
Further, seven unions joined the strike on Friday, taking the number to 17, he told reporters. They called the strike on Thursday after they said talks with Vijayabhaskar on revising their salary and pending dues and arrears amounting to almost Rs 7,000 crore did not result in any breakthrough.
M. Shanmugam of the opposition Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK), who backed the Labour Progressive Federation (LPF), said after the meeting, "While our plea was for a 2.57% wage hike, the government said it was not acceptable and insisted on a 2.44% hike".
Tamilnadu has a fleet of 22,500 buses, with 1.4 lakh workers in the State's employment. "Operating private buses and using temporary drivers will only come as a loss to the government", he said.
Private bus operators were also finding it hard as they were not aware of the routes and where to stop.
Police have been posted at bus depots to prevent any untoward incidents.
Chennai: The strike by transport workers which began last evening, continued for the second day leaving many commuters including office-goers and students stranded in the city and other parts of Tamilnadu.
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