Normal life in Kerala was severely affected on Tuesday as private bus owners suspended services, pressing for an immediate hike in fares.
The situation was further worsened with a section of workers in the state-run KSRTC resorting to a one-day strike, demanding release of an instalment of Dearness Allowance.
Discussions held by Transport Minister Jose Thettayil on Monday with bus operators federation failed to bring about a solution, as the owners stood firmly by their demands.
The impact of the strike was harsher in northern and central districts, where people depend heavily on private buses for travel.
The strike, however, did not affect life in the capital as private buses, operating on temporary licences, conducted their services.
In many places, mini buses, taxis and autorickshaws ran parallel services to ease the morning rush of commuters.
Passenger trains were running packed to capacity in most places across the state.