With the Telangana State Road Transport Corporation (TSRTC) strike entering into the third day, chief minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao has stated that the employees who didn’t report to the duty and went on strike will not be taken back. With this, nearly 50,000 employees are sid to lose their jobs.
KCR Sunday declared that there is no question of taking back the employees into the state-owned transport utility, who did not join the duties before Saturday evening deadline that was set by the government. “Now only 1,200 employees left in TSRTC,” a statement from Chief Minister”s Office quoted him as saying. This means that government has sacked remaining 48,000 odd employees, though the government has not made any such formal announcement.
Nearly 50,000 employees are on strike since Friday midnight to press for their list of 26 demands including merger of TSRTC with the government. For a third consecutive day majority of 10,500 buses of TSRTC remained off the roads, causing severe inconvenience to commuters during festival season. TSRTC bus services carry more than a crore commuters every day.
TSRTC authorities were running partial services by deploying hired buses and temporary drivers. The Chief Minister has asked officials to recruit employees and hire more private buses. Meanwhile, tension prevailed at Telangana Martyrs” Memorial at Gun Park near State Assembly when TSRTC employee unions” leaders reached there to pay their homage. Police arrested the leaders on the grounds that there is no permission for the programme.
Joint Action Committee (JAC) of employee unions took strong exception to the government”s action. JAC leader Ashwathama Reddy said the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) should know that it is in power due to their sacrifices during the movement for Telangana state. He said they were not scared of arrests and threats by the government. Meanwhile, the fast planned by striking leaders at Indira Park was called off as the police refused to give permission for the same. JAC leaders said they would hold a meeting later in the day to chalk out their further course of action.