Its plan to cover losses in marriage season hits roadblock

The decision of the AP State Road Transport Corporation (APSRTC) Employees Union in Seemandhra regions to join the ongoing agitation by supporters of a united Andhra Pradesh has dealt a harder blow to the already financially ailing Corporation.

As a contingency plan to tide over crisis, the RTC officials plan to operate at least skeletal services by pressing into service the 525 hired buses in the fleet besides seeking help of the Transport Department to lend their trained drivers to run buses.

“Unlike other departments that deal with welfare programmes and revenue realisation, RTC is a public service organisation and it should be viewed as essential service and be exempted from the bandh on the lines of water works and health sectors,” says Corporation’s Executive Director for Vijayawada zone R. Nagaraju.

The corporation which has been incurring a revenue loss of Rs. 1.5 crore daily due to the partial bandh in the last few weeks, will be losing Rs. 3 crore daily from Monday midnight if the strike comes into effect.

An official team held a meeting with the union leaders on Wednesday. “We have made an appeal not to put public to inconvenience and reconsider their stand. They said they will get back to us,” said G. Sudesh Kumar, the Corporation’s Regional Manager. “We were pinning hopes on the marriage season in the current Sravana maasam to make up for the losses we incurred in the last few weeks. But the strike notice has put a dampener on our plans. If the employees go ahead with their strike call, it will be difficult for us to even make payment of salaries to the staff. The union leaders must realise that an indefinite strike will give a very hard time to the Corporation as well as its employees,” said Mr. Sudesh Kumar.

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