Government offers 21 per cent of basic pay as IR; unions demand 32 per cent

Talks between representatives of the recognised, Andhra Pradesh State Road Transport Corporation Employees Union and those of the management/Government, led by Transport Minister Botcha Satyanarayana ended in a stalemate on Friday afternoon.

The Minister is understood to have expressed willingness to agree on payment of 21 per cent of basic pay as Interim Relief (IR), with effect from April 1, 2013, while the union leaders wanted 32 per cent. The almost four hour-long discussions ended with Mr. Botcha Satyanarayana to catch a flight to New Delhi.

All through the discussions, Mr. Satyarayana and the corporation’s Managing Director, J. Purnachandra Rao were said to have expressed their inability to comply with the employees’ demand of 32 per cent, a figure that started initially at 46 per cent, considering the financial situation of the corporation.

They pointed out that as of now the corporation had accumulated losses to the tune of a whopping Rs. 5,000 crore to contend with.

The Minister asked the employees to settle for 21 per cent IR and give some time for the corporation to bounce back financially before going ahead with the exercise of pay revision. But as the Union leaders remained steadfast at 32 per cent, the talks could not proceed further.

Those present included Special Chief Secretary (Transport) D. Lakshmi Parthasarathy and Executive Directors of the corporation representing the management, while those from the union were General Secretary K. Padmakar, Additional General Secretary S. Babu, Deputy General Secretary K. Raji Reddy and Publicity Secretary Prasad Reddy.

Strike from Monday

Asked about the course of action, Mr. Padmakar said that as of now, it looked they would have to go on strike, from the early hours of Monday. Meanwhile, the Staff & Workers Federation and the APSRTC National Mazdoor Union, that had earlier served notices on the management, have also stated that they would also strike work.