Bandh affects normal life in Hyderabad, most parts of Telangana

M Somasekhar Hyderabad | Updated on October 19, 2019 Published on October 19, 2019

Bus Bhavan, the headquarters of the Telangana State Road Transport Corporation in Hyderabad, wears a deserted look on Saturday, following the one-day bandh call given by the striking transport workers in the state. Picture credit: K. V. Kurmanath

The opposition parties in Telangana protest in front of the Nalgonda bus depot on Saturday, in support of the RTC employees' bandh call. Photo: Singam Venkataramana   -  THE HINDU

With public transport of virtually all forms off the roads due to the bandh, normal life and weekend activity in Hyderabad and most parts of Telangana State was impacted on Saturday.

The bandh call given by the striking employees of the Road Transport Corporation (RTC), and supported by the Opposition parties, began early on Saturday.

The 15-day-old strike by the more than 50,000 employees of the debt-ridden, loss-making, RTC has been supported by cab aggregators such as Ola and Uber, private autos, transporters and others.

The State Government and Chief Minister, K Chandrasekhar Rao, have taken a tough stand against the strike. The government has imposed Section 144 in nearly all the bus depots. It has roped in private operators and taken the help of Hyderabad Metro Rail to run more trains, besides taking other temporary steps.

Today morning, leaders of the Left, Cong(I), TDP and trade unions led by M Kodandarami and other gathered at the Dharna Chowk, and near RTC Cross Roads, the headquarters of the State Transport Corporation in Hyderabad to register their protest. The police has taken some of the protestors into preventive custody. The BJP, too, has been organising rallies and protests.

Meanwhile, the government is trying to run some buses with police escort, using the service of temporary drivers. It has instructed officials to take action againstthose preventing or obstructing transport operations.

The matter has reached the courts. Schools are on an extended Dussehra holidays. Osmania University has postponed exams as the students’ unions have extended their support to the strike and turned active participants, hosting protests by the RTC leaders on campus.

The IT industry in the Cyberabad area, which depends on taxi aggregators, has made alternative arrangements to reduce the impact of the strike, though it being a Saturday, most of them have a holiday anyway.

Published on October 19, 2019
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