Karnataka transport staff to go on indefinite stir from March 21.

The Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) Staff and Workers Federation has decided to go on an indefinite strike from March 21 to press for pay revision, among other demands, which is likely to disrupt bus operations across the state.

The federation of the employees’ unions in four government transport corporations — BMTC, KSRTC, NWKRTC and KKRTC — called for an indefinite strike on Tuesday, and wrote to chief minister Basavaraj Bommai saying the government has failed to meet their demands.

“Chief minister Basavaraj Bommai and transport minister B Sriramulu had said in previous meetings that they would fulfil all our demands. But our demands have not been met yet,” said HV Anantha Subbarao, president of the federation.

“Recently, when the government employees protested regarding the pay hike, CM Bommai issued an order to increase the salary by 17% as an interim relief. Even though we have been protesting for so many years, they are not paying attention. They are ready to increase our salary by only 10%, which we have rejected,” Subbarao added.

Their demands include merger of the dearness allowance with the basic pay and hike in the revised basic pay by 25%. They have also demanded that the annual increment be 3% of the revised basic pay.

Other demands include grade promotion after every 10 years of service, raising all allowances paid to bus drivers, conductors, and technical and administrative staff by five times, unconditional reinstatement of all employees who joined the April 2021 strike and removal of their names from the FIRs, among others.

Last month, around 1,000 members of the KSRTC Employees’ Koota, which represents over 15,000 employees, protested at the Freedom Park in Bengaluru, seeking a pay raise, among other demands.

“The pay the KSRTC employees get is much lower than what employees in other government departments get. The disparity varies from 19% to 65% for different employees,” said Chandrashekar, state president of the KSRTC Employees’ Koota.

The KSRTC Employees’ Koota has called an indefinite strike from March 24 onwards, demanding the implementation of the 6th pay commission report for employees.

With the protest planned ahead of Ugadi festival in the state, it may cause inconvenience to passengers, especially those who have made reservations.

Source- Hindustan Times.

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