Bus strike: Standoff on, Tamil Nadu government issues Sunday ultimatum

07 January, 2018, 08:13 | Author: Phil Peters
  • Tamil Nadu bus strike

Taking a serious view of the strike called by certain unions, it said the workers should get back to work or "face consequences", including termination and contempt of court. The few buses which plied had a very few passengers while government and private buses operated from Tirunelveli to Thoothukudi and Nagercoil were overflowing with passengers in the morning.

Transport workers are demanding salaries on par with drivers in other State government corporations.

The MLA's effort, however, has not gone down well with local union leaders representing transport workers.

"The government should invite us for talks and settle the issue amicably or the strike will intensify. the Chief Minister himself should intervene", he said. Ten unions had announced launching the strike yesterday after wage-related talks with the government failed. "This wage agreement had the highest revision proposed, where the minimum was Rs 2,684 while the highest was Rs 11,361", the Minister said.

"I appeal to employees to come back for duty, honorable court has also asked them to come back", Vijayabhaskar said addressing media here on the third day of the strike.

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Muthukumaran is among the thousands of transport workers who are on an indefinite strike since Thursday evening over the issue of higher wages.

Meanwhile, another minister KC Veeramani gave a dressing down to policemen on the streets for allegedly not taking action against agitating employees who were preventing others from joining works.

Responding to the government warning of action, Sounderrajan said it did not befit the former and insisted that it should opt for talks to end the stalemate. "If they fail to do so, as per the law, departmental action will be initiated against them".

While the Madras High Court has directed striking workers to resume work, trade unions have announced that they would continue their protest till their demands are met. A large number of people were seen queued up waiting for the private buses at the bus stops. The commuters complained that auto rickshaws and taxis charged exorbitant fares as the public transport system was hit.

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