TN transport workers withdraw 8-day-old strike

BUS_STRIKE

The unions went ahead with the strike despite the Madras High Court restraining the State Transport Corporation employees from continuing their strike.

Transport unions in Tamil Nadu withdrew their eight-day-long strike on Thursday evening, ANI reported.

The Tamil Nadu government came under controversy recently, when they almost doubled the salaries of its MLAs while the transport workers were on strike demanding increase in wages.

"Our protests would continue across the state until our demands are met", said A Soundarrajan, a trade union leader. Also, the salary hike for MLAs is needless when government has no money to pay transport workers.

Responding to the criticism of striking before the busy Pongal holiday period, he said, "The Transport Minister will have to solve it", essentially not giving the government in general and the minister in particular any breathing room with regards to an outcome of the discussions.

"In the interest of children, students, patients, elders, commuters and larger section of the society, the issue has been referred to the arbitrator to adjudicate the wage dispute and the effective date of such revision of wage", the High Court bench said.




The golden jubilee of the state getting rechristened as Tamil Nadu will be celebrated by the government, Chief Minister K Palaniswami told the Assembly on Thursday.

"The strike is being temporarily withdrawn keeping in mind the welfare of the people of the state", he added.

Both the LPF and CITU categorically informed a special bench of the Madras HC headed by Justice S Manikumar on Wednesday that there was no scope to withdraw the strike unless the government agreed to suspend the settlement that was signed and resumed negotiations.

While unions wanted a 2.57 times hike, the government offered only 2.44, resulting in the stalemate.

Those involved from the union who are participating in the strike include drivers, conductors and technical staff.

The striking employees have been fighting for over a year for wage revision and clearance of arrears including retirement benefits and provident fund.

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