Telangana: A strike by the employees of the Telangana State Road Transport Corporation (TSRTC), is being conducted and the staff of the TSRTC is participating in the strike. The case is being heard in the Telangana High Court and the bench of the advocates on hearing the part spoken by the corporation’s in-charge Managing Director Mr.Sunil Sharma who submitted an additional affidavit, arguing that the strike was illegal under the Industrial Disputes Act.
The in-charge MD told the court that even if the existing employees voluntarily return to work, it may be difficult for TSRTC to retain them as it suffered huge financial losses due to the strike. Mr. Sharma stated that the employees went on strike during Dasara to blackmail TSRTC. He said that the strike was being observed for the vested interests of union leaders, causing losses to the people, the workers, and the RTC. He also alleged that the union leaders were threatening TSRTC through the opposition parties. He sought early orders by the court, keeping in view the larger public interest.
On Monday The High Court said that it cannot direct the government to hold talks with the striking employees. A division bench headed by Chief Justice R.S. Chauhan also stated that it cannot declare the ongoing strike as illegal.
The court scheduled the next hearing on PILs on the strike on November 18. During this period the strike which entered the 43rd day saw a high drama across the state. Mr. Ashwathama Reddy, a convener of the TSRTC employees’ Joint Action Committee (JAC), sat on fast along with some supporters at his residence in Hyderabad after the police denied him permission to sit on fast at the Indira Park. This was done by the police as a precautionary measure to avert any law and order problem. Reddy said he would continue his fast till the state government convenes the striking employees for talks on their demands. The police surrounded his house late on Friday night
The police moved into swift action when the striking employees staged a bus roko across the state on Saturday preventing the busses from being operated with the help of Temporary staff and arrested scores of protesters involved in the bus roko.