The stir by nearly 50,000 staff of Telangana State Road Transport Corporation (TSRTC) has entered the third day on Monday with TSRTC buses staying off the roads hampering travel plans of thousands of people during the festive season. The transport situation in the state has come to a standstill because of the strike as thousands of passengers were stuck at various bus stands through the state.
Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao had directed concerned officials to hire 2,500 private buses to make up for the shortfall of public transport but will that help is yet to be tested. At the moment, the standoff has worsened with Union leaders who had come to protest in support of TSRTC workers at Gunpark were taken into custody.
KCR however, remains defiant. As per reports, KCR has announced that a totally new beginning would be made and RTC would be turned into a profit-making organisation. According to government sources, the TSRTC is incurring losses to the tune Rs 1200 crore and has debts worth Rs 5,000 crore with the rising diesel prices. KCR so far has refused to come to any compromise with the TSRTC.
He also ordered that normal RTC operations be restored in 15 days.
New employees should be hired soon and they should give an undertaking that they would not join any trade unions, he added.
The Telangana High Court had directed the state government to file a report on October 10 about the arrangements made. It also ordered to serve notices on two RTC unions.
Telangana government has sacked 48,000 employees of the Telangana State Roads Transport Corporation(TSRTC) with Chief Minister K. Chandrashekar Rao calling the strike -- 'unpardonable crime'.
TSRTC trade bodies will challenge the state government's decision to sack about 48,000 agitating employees as and when they are served with dismissal. on suspension notices, union leader said on Monday.
"They cannot remove us just like that," says Telangana Mazdoor Union President
Telangana Mazdoor Union president E Ashwathama Reddy, however, clarified that the agitating workers have not received any dismissal or suspension notice from the government or the management of RTC.
".. There are laws in this country. We have been appointed as per rules. They cannot remove us just like that," Reddy told PTI.
"There are courts. We will approach courts if necessary," he said.
Government brands strike 'Illegal'
His statement comes a day after the state government declared the indefinite strike as "illegal" and rejected their demands for a merger with it.
Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao had on Sunday said employees who did not join duty before the deadline (6 pm on Saturday) set by the government would not be taken back.
"As it is there are less than 1,200 employees in the RTC," he had said indicating that those who have not reported for duty before the deadline, would be losing their jobs.
What is the TSRTC strike about?
Employees of Telangana State Road Transport Corporation is demanding that the KCR government accord them government employees status and merge TSRTC with the state government. The K Chandrasekhar Rao-government has said no to their demands
Different employees' and workers' unions of the TSRTC began an indefinite strike on Friday midnight across Telangana on a call given by the Joint Action Committee (JAC) of the corporation, demanding merger of the RTC with the government and recruitment to various posts, among other things.