Telangana

TSRTC workers restrained in their approach

Yadgiri, a TSRTC bus conductor with Musheerabad-II bus depot, breaks down as the government refused to allow them rejoin duties even after the unions called off the 50-odd days’ strike.

Yadgiri, a TSRTC bus conductor with Musheerabad-II bus depot, breaks down as the government refused to allow them rejoin duties even after the unions called off the 50-odd days’ strike.   | Photo Credit: K.V.S. Giri

All eyes on today’s Cabinet meeting

Contrary to Tuesday’s scenes of RTC workers gathering at depots in eagerness to resume duty after the strike was called off , there were a few of them who resorted to the same on Wednesday across the State.

The police picked up whoever went to depots and released them later. Apparently, sources said the workers did not repeat the act as they apprehended that arrests could have an adverse impact on their employment. Women conductors were seen weeping at some places.

Meanwhile, all eyes were on the Cabinet meeting on Thursday to discuss the issue. At the same time, the Joint Action Committee of RTC unions gave a call to workers to submit letters in a given format to the Labour Commissioner in Hyderabad and subordinate officers in districts, requesting them to ensure that they were given back their jobs. This was because depot managers refused to allow them to resume work on instructions of the RTC management.

The JAC also met here to discuss strategies to mount pressure on the government to let workers resume duty. Its convenor E. Aswathama Reddy and other leaders explored whether they should go ahead with the programme with the support of opposition parties.

Separately, the trade unions of Left parties held a round-table meeting on the issue with leaders of political parties which was attended by Telangana Jana Samiti president M. Kodandaram and Telugu Desam - Telangana president L. Ramana.

Mr. Kodandaram said the opposition parties would not remain spectators if the government privatised the RTC. This was the first time that any government had refused to let workers resume duty after they had called off strike. Governments in the past invited union leaders for talks after the strike was over and negotiated on service matters. He also reminded that it was not easy to terminate the employment of workers if the government drew any such plan. The government cannot make structural changes in RTC without the consent of the Centre.

Mr. Ramana said all opposition parties would launch a united struggle against privatisation of RTC. CPI State secretary Chada Venkat Reddy recalled that strike was the right of workers.

The opposition parties decided to organise a ‘chalo Pragati Bhavan’ on December 5 in support of RTC workers. Leaders of the parties, who met at a hotel, discussed launching a people’s movement as the workers were an important section in the struggle for statehood to Telangana.

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Printable version | Feb 20, 2020 10:39:23 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/telangana/rtc-workers-restrained-in-their-approach/article30099143.ece

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