Haryana Roadways strike: Over 2,800 buses on roads now, claims govt

October 24, 2018 11:10 AM

Punjab News Express
CHANDIGARH:  Even as the coordination committee of the striking Haryana Roadways employees on Tuesday decided to continue their strike till October 25, the government claimed an improvement in the situation with over 2,800 buses now running on roads across the state.

As many as 174 new drivers who had been recently appointed would start working from Wednesday and run roadways buses on as many routes.

Meanwhile, the government has invited leaders of Haryana Roadways employees’ union for a fresh round of talks. Their negotiations failed on Sunday after the government said it was firm on its decision to rope in 700 private buses.

The union leaders and state transport minister Krishan Panwar will have a meeting on Wednesday.

“Around 550 buses plied in the state on Sunday, but the number jumped to about 2,100 on Monday, which further rose to 2,800 on Tuesday,” additional chief secretary Dhanpat Singh said.

These included 1,464 buses of Haryana Roadways buses, 1,059 of cooperative societies and 279 hired from private institutions. Around 4,100 buses of Haryana Roadways run daily on routine days.

He said as many as 174 new drivers who had been recently appointed would start working from Wednesday and run roadways buses on as many routes.

47 employees dismissed so far

Singh said the government had terminated on Tuesday the service of five more drivers who were on probation and yet joined the strike.

This has brought the number of probationary employees whose services had been terminated to 47. Besides, around 200 other employees who had been hired through outsourced agencies have also been fired.

He also said that some of the probationary employees, who had gone on strike, have now resumed work. On Tuesday, about 30 such employees resumed duties in Faridabad and about 25 in Narnaul, he said.

The roadways employees had gone on strike on October 16 to protest against the government’s move to rope in 700 private buses, even as the Essential Services Maintenance Act (Esma) is in force in the state.

However, as the government started taking action against striking employees under Esma, the employees union extended their strike till October 25.

Haryana Sarvkarmchari Sangh, an umbrella body of over 40 unions of government employees, has also extended their support to the striking roadways employees.

7 drivers booked under ESMA in Hisar

The Hisar police on Tuesday booked seven striking drivers of the Haryana Roadways under the provisions of the Essential Services Maintenance Act (ESMA).

Talking to HT, police spokesperson Harish Bhardwaj said the case was registered against these drivers on the basis of a complaint by the roadways general manager (GM), Hisar depot, who alleged that they participated in the ‘chakka jam’ from October 16 to October 22, and did not report to duty even as they were asked to do so.

These drivers were identified as Rajesh, Fateh Singh, Virender Singh, Pawan, Ashok, Naresh and Nagendra. He said the police were further investigating into the matter.

Roadways GM in Sirsa seeks security

Meanwhile, Sirsa depot roadways GM Khubi Ram Kaushal has sought police security, saying two unidentified youths allegedly handed him a letter on Monday night, asking him to join the ongoing ‘chakka jam’.

Kaushal wrote a letter to Sirsa superintendent of police (SP) Hamid Akhtar in this regard.

“I am ensuring that an average of 45 buses ply from Sirsa daily. The protesters feel that their ‘chakka jam’ is not a success here, so they have warned me through this letter. I feel someone can harm me and my family,” he added.

Have something to say? Post your comment