Published: Sat, January 13, 2018
People | By Leon Thompson

Tamil Nadu transport unions end strike, to resume work from today

Tamil Nadu transport unions end strike, to resume work from today

A week after the government employees began protesting for a wage revision, drivers and support staff of the Tamil Nadu State Transportation Corporation (TNSTC) have chose to resume duty.

Palaniswamy said the dues of retired transport workers would be cleared in a few days, and requested workers to resume work.

The employees are in fact set to intensify protests after the state government issued notices to almost 60,000 workers for abstaining from work on 5 and 6 January, reports The Times of India.

The AAP and CPI (M) showed their support for the Tamil Nadu transport workers.

One of the unions taking part in the strike is the DMK's Labour Progressive Front (LPF).

Tamil Nadu has over 22,000 buses with a workforce of about 143,000 employees and over 10 rounds of talks have been held between the trade unions and government representatives, including transport minister M.R. Vijayabhaskar.

Not refusing to back down, the state government had roped in additional drivers and conductors to resume the stalled buses.

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Those involved from the union who are participating in the strike include drivers, conductors and technical staff. "The government should respect the labourers", said Irualappan, a member of a labour union.

The decision also came in the wake of the Madras High Court appointing an arbitrator today to settle the dispute between the government and the employees over wage revision.

Tamil Nadu chief minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami, in the state assembly on Tuesday, urged workers to accept the government's offer and withdraw the strike.

Approaching the busy Pongal festive period, the number of people travelling by bus increases significantly.

The continuing bus strike, in a state where state-run buses ferry hundreds of thousands daily, had forced more and more people to take to local trains, making them over-crowded. The strike has affected the passengers across the state. The bill proposing a pay hike looks bad given the circumstances and seems ill advised.

There are almost 1.4 lakh workers in the TN's transport department who handle around 22,500 buses.

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