Educational institutions remain shut; RTC runs limited services
Students remained off the educational institutions, roads were relatively free, buses ran sporadically and ordinary people across the twin cities and Ranga Reddy district endured blackouts in two spells on Wednesday. It was the ninth day of the ‘Sakala Janula Samme' declared by the Telangana Joint Action Committee towards achieving Telangana.
On Tuesday itself, majority of educational institutions including schools, colleges and professional institutions declared holidays up to September 25 for the students. However, a few schools reportedly went ahead with conducting the term exams for their students, while a few others functioned discreetly in the evening hours from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m.
In some schools, students were reportedly asked to wear normal clothing so as not to attract the attention of the strikers.
With government advancing the Dasara vacation from September 27 to September 22, now the private school managements are mulling over setting off in the vacation, the days lost due to the strike. Some, in fact, have already declared. With not many APSRTC services released for public transport, Setwin buses made a killing on busy routes. However, RTC too ran a limited number of services on select routes, and commandeered hired buses for the purpose.
“We ran 242 services in the city region among which 175 are private hired buses. We even brought down vehicles from Khammam and Mahabubnagar districts to ply,” informed Executive Director of APSRTC city region Purushotham Naik. Drivers and conductors from private transporters were also hired. Threatened with removal from services, 78 drivers and 106 conductors employed on contract basis reported to duty on Wednesday, informed Mr. Naik. Many conductors were seen in civilian clothing so as not to be conspicuous.
The central Discom enforced two-hour load reliefs in two spells within the Greater Hyderabad region, to grapple with the power shortage resulting from the strike of coal mining workers in Singareni Collieries. Power cuts of an hour each in the morning as well as post-noon hours were imposed in various localities. However, essential services such as hospitals and water works have been exempted from the blackouts, said acting Chief General Manager, Metro Zone, D.R.K.Prasad.