Karnataka transport strike: Government invites retired drivers to join work

The major demands of the protesters are that they are brought under the government’s payroll, which is the 6th Pay Commission, and provided the same privileges and incentives as government employees.

As the Karnataka transport strike enters the third day, the state government invited retired employees to rejoin the service as part of alternative arrangements.

A notification issued on Thursday evening by the Transport department invited retired employees below 62 years of age to work on a contract basis, with an honorarium of Rs 800 for drivers and Rs 700 for conductors, provided they clear the fitness test, including vision test.

According to a statement, 446 buses belonging to the four corporations resumed operations on Thursday. Around 4,412 private buses ferried passengers for Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC), 2,188 for North Western KRTC and 4,278 for North Eastern KRTC.

Meanwhile, the KSRTC suspended 32 trainees while the BMTC suspended 96 employees for participating in the strike.

The workers of Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC), Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC), North Western Karnataka Road Transport Corporation (NWKRTC), and North Eastern Karnataka Road Transport Corporation (NEKRTC), under the banner of Karnataka State Road Transport Employees League, have called for an indefinite strike starting from Wednesday, demanding that the government implement a salary system as per the 6th Pay Commission for workers of state transport undertakings.

The state government has made alternate arrangements by roping in private transport operators to mitigate the impact of the strike.

The major demands of the protesters are that they are brought under the government’s payroll, which is the 6th Pay Commission, and provided the same privileges and incentives as government employees.

Meanwhile, opposition Congress leader and former Chief Minister of Karnataka Siddaramaiah on Thursday alleged that it was the Karnataka government’s “inefficiency and its false promises” that resulted in the indefinite strike of the State Road Transport Corporation employees.

“People of Karnataka are already suffering from the pandemic, and the ongoing strike by KSRTC employees has resulted in further loss to the people. The inefficient and corrupt administration of the Karnataka government is the only reason for this fiasco, ” he said in a tweet.

“Instead of solving the crisis through dialogue and discussions with the employees union, the Karnataka government is trying to threaten the employees by allowing private buses and citing Essential Services Maintenance Act (ESMA) provisions,” he said

Source: Read Full Article