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RTC workers from AP, TS serve strike notice

RTC workers from AP, TS serve strike notice
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Highlights

Nearly 20,000 RTC workers from Andhra Pradesh and Telangana divisions put up a united front by laying siege to Bus Bhavan in Hyderabad on Thursday to press for their demands among which includes speedy bifurcation of the bus corporation for effective functioning. Demanding salary hike on par with the non-gazetted officers (NGOs), the workers served strike notice to RTC vice-chairman and managing director N Sambasiva Rao.

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Hyderabad: Nearly 20,000 RTC workers from Andhra Pradesh and Telangana divisions put up a united front by laying siege to Bus Bhavan in Hyderabad on Thursday to press for their demands among which includes speedy bifurcation of the bus corporation for effective functioning. Demanding salary hike on par with the non-gazetted officers (NGOs), the workers served strike notice to RTC vice-chairman and managing director N Sambasiva Rao. The workers are demanding an announcement of a fitment hike of 43 per cent by April 15, failing which they would go on an indefinite strike any day after that.

The notices were also given to the Principal Secretaries and State Labour Commissioners of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. Stating that the losses suffered by the RTC were due to flawed policies adopted by various governments, Employees Union General Secretary K Padmakar and Telangana Mazdoor Union (TMU) General Secretary E Ashwatthama Reddy warned that they would not tolerate the management’s tactic to attribute these loses to employees and decide against hiking salaries.

When the RTC management was ready to concede their demands on service conditions, allowances and fringe benefits, the union leaders wondered why it was not favourable for the 43 per cent fitment hike. Claiming that the RTC workers’ productivity was much higher than the NGOs, the union leaders said that they deserve fitment on par with the state government employees.

Since the failure of the latest round of talks between the management and unions ended in a failure on Wednesday, RTC workers from all the 218 depots and seven workshops across 23 districts of AP and Telangana converged in Hyderabad on Thursday. They took out a rally from Sundarayya Park to Bus Bhavan and laid siege to it. The strike had a great impact on the commuters. Except for the Ranigunj depot, buses from other depots did not operate. The auto drivers took advantage of the strike and increased fares by more than 40 per cent. Students who were appearing for the SSC exams had to pay through their noses to reach to their examination centres.

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