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Karnataka transport corporation employees plan to intensify stir

Our Bureau Bengaluru | Updated on April 09, 2021

Yediyurappa appeals to workers ‘don’t get misguided, get back to work’

The Karnataka government has met eight out of nine demands made by the transport employees, said Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa and appealed to the striking employees to get back to work.

The State-wide transport corporations’ employees continued for the third day on Friday. Workers are demanding their wages to be increased and are gearing up to intensify their agitation from the fourth day.

The chief minister, assessing the situation, said: “I appeal to transport workers with folded hands. Don’t listen to people not associated with the transport sector and become stubborn. As you know in the given Covid circumstances, despite the problems the transport department had no funds for salaries, we gave ₹2,300 crore.”

Referring to the wage revision as per the 6th Pay Commission, the chief minister said it cannot happen in the current circumstances. When you know we won’t do it, why are you expecting something like this? It’s wrong.”

Refusing to meet or initiate talks with agitating employees, Yediyurappa said “What else is there to talk about? We’ve met eight demands. And, I’ll set right any shortcoming in the fulfilment of these eight demands.”

Penal action

Meanwhile, the Karnataka Transport Department has begun to take penal action against KSRTC, BMTC NWKRTC and NEKRTC employees who are supporting a strike by invoking Essential Services Management Act (ESMA) power.

ESMA empowers the State government to punish employees who refuse to serve in essential sectors which include healthcare, transport, electricity, food, drinking water and security.

A transport department official said: “Inspite of the strike, few corporation employees positively responded to the government request and returned to duty. Few other employees are ready to join duty. But Union leaders are provoking them not to join the duty and also threatening the corporation employees who are on duty. However, at Corporation level efforts are being made, employees to get back to their duty.”

Published on April 09, 2021

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