Hyderabad: Telangana State High Court today expressed its displeasure over the lack of any action by the state government to end the two-week long strike by the employees of the State Road Transport Corporation.
Taking up the matter for further hearing on Friday, a division bench headed by Chief Justice Raghvendra Singh Chauhan wanted to know the government about the efforts it made to resolve the issue.
Noting that the transport strike in the state had badly hit the economy, the court expressed its pain over the suffering of the commuter. In what is being seen as an indictment of the government, the court said that the demand of the RTC employees to increase the dearness allowance was justified. The court wanted to know from the government why it did not appoint the Managing Director of RTC who could have dealt with the problems of the organization.
The court also noted the face that all the opposition parties, government employees and the private cab drivers had also declared their support to the general strike called on Saturday.
Additional Advocate General Ramachandra Rao submitted that the government was unable to meet the demands of the employees due to the weak financial position of the RTC. When he cited the reason for not appointing MD, the judges expressed their dissatisfaction.
High Court, which had asked both the sides to start talks to resolve the deadlock, will continue its hearing.
Even as the RTC strike was entering third week, Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao’s woes continue to pile up.
The suffering of commuters in the state capital Hyderabad, caused by the bus strike was likely to worsen with the state taxi drivers’ Joint Action Committee also threatening to go on an indefinite strike from Saturday. The threat came even as the state government employees have also threatened that they will not hesitate to struck the work to press their own demands. The threat was issued by the Joint Action Committee of the non gazette officers, teachers, pensions and others workers. Significantly the JAC has also declared its support to the RTC strike and announced that its members will hold lunch hour demonstrations on Saturday when the RTC employees’ joint action committee has called for a state wide general strike.
The taxi drivers, including those working with Ola and Uber, were demanding increase in the minimum fare to Rs 22 per kms and improvement in their working conditions. Shaikh Salahuddin, convenor of taxi drivers Joint Action Committee said that 50,000 taxis will go off the road from Saturday.
Meanwhile, in the continuing agitation by the RTC employees, their Joint Action Committee convenor Ashwaddhama Reddy and co convenor Raji Reddy were arrested by the police on Friday when they were participating in a bike rally organized by the left parties in support of the strike. The police also detained the leaders of the left parties and other works when they took out the bike rally in Hyderabad.
Earlier Ashwaddhama Reddy said that the RTC employees will continue their struggle despite all the hardships they have to face. “Government’s adamant attitude is responsible for the situation”, he said demanding that it should come forward to talk with the employees.