MSRTC strike: Deadlock continues

MSRTC strike: Deadlock continues

NASHIK: The ST strike that has been raging for the last few days has not been resolved yet. A meeting was held between the ST staff delegation and the Leader of Opposition Devendra Fadanvis. The ST staff delegation included Gopichand Padalkar, Sadabhau Khot, and ST staff. Transport Minister Anil Parbahi was also present at the meeting. No breakthrough has been reached on the ST strike after this meeting.

It is understood that the state government has taken a big decision to end the strike. It has cleared the way for the pending recruitment of 3,500 employees of the ST Corporation which was halted due to the pandemic. Out of 5400 employees from the Nashik division, about 400 staff members including administrative are reporting to duty. While in the meantime 40 temporary workers were suspended by the government for participating in the strike which entered the 22nd day on Thursday.

MSRTC employees, including all the depots from the Nashik division, are engaged in statewide protest against the State Government for their demands for almost two weeks. Kanishth Shreni ST Karmachari Sangh president Ajay Kumar Gujar has submitted a 365-page memorandum to Maharashtra Chief Secretary Sitaram Kunte, and the committee formed to look after the demands of MSRTC staffers to merge the corporation with the state government.

Lawyer Gunratna Sadavarte, appearing for the unions, had submitted before the Bombay High Court during the contempt petition hearing filed by MSRTC against the unions that the union representative would participate in the committee's proceedings.

He had submitted that the representation would be done by way of submitting a written memorandum through a representative of the union. Subsequently, Gujar had met Kunte, who heads the committee, and submitted the memorandum.

According to the source, the memorandum includes demands and suggestions for merging the MSRTC with the government. The official said Gujar also put forward an issue of alleged death by suicide of MSRTC staffers and for their compensation.

In the meantime, the MSRTC has issued notices to 2,296 daily wage workers for participating in the ongoing strike though over 100 bus services were operated with the help of a section of employees who resumed duty, officials said.

The workers were asked to join duty within 24 hours or face termination, they said, adding 7,400 other employees reported for work during the day. Employees of the loss-making corporation are on an indefinite strike seeking a merger of the MSRTC with the state government.

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