Tamil Nadu transport workers, who had gone on an indefinite strike over wage revision, on Thursday called off their agitation. According to ANI, A. Soundararajan of Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU) announced that the strike has been called off and the workers will resume their duties starting Friday.
The strike call was given by workers affiliated to some transport unions, who have rejected the wage hike proposed by the Tamil Nadu government. The stir had severely affected commuters, even though the government tried to keep the transport services running by bringing in temporary drivers and conductors, in addition to the employees who were not on strike.
Transport Minister M R Vijayabhaskar had defended the proposed hike citing poor financial status of the transport corporations and appealed to the employees to resume work. He had accused the unions spearheading the strike of misleading the employees and said the issue should not be politicised.
The Madras High Court had on Monday refused to lift its January 5 interim order restraining the employees from taking recourse to strike. It had, however, made it clear that no striking worker can be terminated from service without its permission.
The government had said it would initiate departmental action if the striking employees did not report to duty by January 7. The trade unions, however, said the employees were “firm” on their demands and announced the continuance of the indefinite strike.
As many as 17 trade unions had launched the indefinite strike since last Thursday night, with scores of Tamil Nadu State Transport Corporation (TNSTC) staff joining the protest. The striking unions wanted the factor for wage revision to be fixed at 2.57 times, while government insisted it be 2.44.
(With PTI inputs)