Brace up for chaos on the roads and rush in the DTC buses and Metro on Wednesday and Thursday, as over 45,000 autos will remain off the road owing a massive trade union strike.
Normal life is likely to be thrown out of gear with banks, several public sector organisations, and auto-rickshaw unions joining hands to strike work in the next two days.
This is the first time that 11 central trade unions, along with over 2,000 local and independent unions, are going on a strike for two days.
While the auto-rickshaw unions, led by Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh-supported Bharatiya Mazdoor Sangh, will remain on strike, Delhi transport minister Ramakant Goswami said public transport will not be affected. These unions control more than 45,000 of the total 70,000 auto-rickshaws in the Capital.
The auto-rickshaw unions have been demanding a hike in fares for a long time. “This is our warning to the government. Either increase our fare or reduce the CNG prices, else face the music,” said Bharatiya Mazdoor Sangh spokesperson Rajendra Soni.
Goswami, however, said enough measures had been taken to ensure general public was not affected.
“We have cancelled the leaves of DTC staff. The depot managers have been told to ensure that maximum possible DTC buses are on roads. The commuters will be allowed to carry their luggage in the buses going to or coming from railways stations and bus terminals,” Goswami said.
“About 1,000 mini and tourist buses would run on DTC routes on Wednesday and Thursday. These buses would display DTC route numbers and would charge DTC fare,” he added.
Car rental company Olacabs has also offered to run their cars on the fare of auto-rickshaws in Delhi and Gurgaon for two days.
While the strike is likely to impact the supply of petrol and diesel, senior Indraprastha Gas Limited (IGL) officials claim the supply of Compressed Natural Gas will not be affected as most of their filling stations are online.
Petrol dealers, however, said their pumps may start drying out from Wednesday evening.
“Even as we have been told by the oil companies to top up our tanks and plan our supplies in advance, the two-day strike will start showing its effect from Wednesday evening, as the work at the supply terminals will be affected by the strike,” said Delhi Petrol Dealers Association vice-president Nishit Goel.