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Snap strike by BMTC crew disrupts morning schedules

Special Correspondent
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BRAKES ON:Bus drivers and conductors of Depot 21 sit in protest in front of the Rajarajeshwarinagar police station Thursday morning.— Photo: K. Murali
BRAKES ON:Bus drivers and conductors of Depot 21 sit in protest in front of the Rajarajeshwarinagar police station Thursday morning.— Photo: K. Murali

Hundreds of passengers in southwest Bangalore were put to severe hardship as the crew attached to the Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation’s Rajarajeshwarinagar depot went on a snap strike Thursday morning.

The crew were enraged over police inaction in bringing to book some autorickshaw drivers who had allegedly assaulted a BMTC driver near Nimishamba temple in Rajarajeshwarinagar on Wednesday night.

Commuters stranded

As a result, many services that were to leave the depot in the morning were disrupted, leaving hundreds of commuters in the lurch. Fortunately, a few services from other depots were in operation, which the commuters used to reach either Mysore Road or Kengeri-Uttarahalli Road and took connecting services.

BMTC Managing Director Anjum Parvez denied that the management did not come to the support of the aggrieved crew. He told The Hindu the depot manager and the divisional controller went to the spot on Thursday morning to see that a police case was registered. Normal services were restored by 11 a.m., he said.

Efforts fail

A senior BMTC official said he had offered to get the FIR registered and asked a few of the crew to accompany him to the police station. However, some members prevailed over the others and took out a march to the police station, and his efforts to get the services going were unsuccessful. Of the 176 buses in the depot, about 60 did not operate till about 11.30 a.m. Thereafter, services were back to normal.

Deputy Commissioner of Police (West) D.C. Rajappa said the police could not register a case on Wednesday night for a technical reason. Cases of assault and preventing a public servant from discharging his duty were registered against some autorickshaw drivers Thursday morning. He said autorickshaw drivers too have their grouse against BMTC drivers as they often damage their vehicles with their reckless driving.

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