Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) employees have not received their salary for July payable by August 8.
While workers have blamed the management for the inordinate delay during the beginning of the festival season, the management has attributed this to reduced cash flow because of multiple reasons — payment of arrears, lean season due to “Aashada” and cancellation of services to Andhra Pradesh.
While salaries of employees attached to Mysore, Hassan and Chikmagalur divisions were not paid till Wednesday, employees in the remaining 13 divisions got their salaries beyond the stipulated date, that is, 8th day of the month.
A KSRTC conductor, who wished not to be named, told The Hindu that women members in his family were a disappointed lot as the non-payment of salary has affected celebration of two important festivals of this season — Nagara Panchami and Varamahalakshmi. He said that plans to repay hand-loans borrowed from friends for children’s school needs last month too got affected.
KSRTC Managing Director N. Manjunatha Prasad attributed the delay to exhausted cash reserves on account of payment of salary arrears amounting to Rs. 45 crore last month. However, the situation has improved now and payments are being streamlined for all employees, including the three affected divisions, he said.
Another senior official cited other reasons, including reduced revenue due to lean season.
People avoid travelling in the month of “Aashada” because of heavy rain as well as the absence of any function or festival, the official said.
Also, cancellation of operations to Andhra Pradesh due to the Telangana agitation since a fortnight has affected the revenues, about Rs. 60 lakh a day, he said.
Another important reason according to this official is stopping of bulk purchase of diesel because of higher price.
When diesel was bought in bulk from Indian Oil Corporation (IOC), about a month’s time used to be given for payment. Since diesel is being bought from retail outlets to avoid higher price these days, payments have to be made immediately thereby reducing cash flow for short-term turnover, he said.