MSRTC employees continue strike; demand corporation’s merger with state

The agitation, which began on October 27, continues despite a restraining order, as some demands of the employees remain unaddressed

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A large chunk of the staff of the Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporation (MSRTC) continued to agitate, for the 11th successive day on November 8, 2021.

The employees of the state’s public transit body had started a spontaneous agitation on October 27, seeking fulfilment of multiple demands. The employee unions called off the strike after the Maharashtra government accepted a majority of their demands and a majority of them returned to work. However, one of the major demands of the employees, the merger of the corporation with the state government, went unaddressed.

Union sources have said that many of the corporation’s employees are yet to report back to work because this issue remains unresolved, needless to say it is causing major disruptions in the public transit system of the state.

The workers’ union of MSRTC had declared on Sunday that 129 depots in Maharashtra would remain non-operational for an indefinite period of time. Overall, only 60 per cent of the bus services across the state would continue to be operational. The most affected regions in the state would be North Maharashtra, Marathwada and Vidarbha.

Taking charge of the situation, a vacation bench of the Bombay High Court, constituting Justice SJ Kathawalla and Justice SP Tavade ordered the state government of Maharashtra to form a three-member committee to resolve the issue. In the order, the bench directed that the managing director of MSRTC would act as a coordinator to the committee and assist the committee in the decision-making process. However, he would not hold any power in the process.

The HC had called for an end to the agitation last week, which continues despite a restraining order.

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