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Strikers adamant, minister unrelenting

india Updated: Jul 12, 2006 01:29 IST

‘Chakka jam’ call evokes mixed response

THE ‘CHAKKA jam’ call given by the UP Roadways Employees Union (UPREU) to press its demands for DA merger and raise in the retirement age evoked mixed response in the State today. The passengers were seen wandering here and there on bus stations looking for bus services. The 24-hour strike began on Monday midnight.

The impact was total in the State Capital where even the UPSRTC headquarters gave a barren look and the officers depended on self-service with there being not a single peon to assist them.

No untoward incidence was reported from any place, though police took employees’ leaders in custody in some cities for stopping the staff from joining the duty.

The strike is said to have caused a revenue loss of around Rs 2 crore even as the UPREU has threatened to begin an indefinite strike from midnight of August 15, if the Government failed to meet employees’ demands.

Around 4,000 buses stayed off the road. Reports said strike did not have much impact in the regions of Agra, Aligarh, Hatharas, Matura and Bareilly, while the impact was only partial in Varanasi, Allahabad and Meerut regions. The worst affected regions were Lucknow, Azamgarh, Gorakhpur, Faizabad, Kanpur and Jhansi.

In Lucknow, all the bus-stations including Alambagh, Charbagh and Kaiserbagh did not have buses to ply though passengers were seen drifting here and there looking for an alternative arrangement of transport.

The condition of the UPSRTC bosses sitting in the headquarters was pathetic.

They did not have any assistant or peon to move files or take water and tea for them. Even the MD’s personal staff and the peons were missing. MD, Deepak Trivedi described the bandh as partial. He refused to comment on whether the corporation would take action against the striking employees under the Essential Services Maintenance Act (ESMA) as warned prior.

In a statement, UPREU president, Ram Ji Tripathi and general secretary, Tej Bahadur Sharma claimed the strike to be total all over the State. They said employees would be forced to go on an indefinite strike from August 15, if the ‘legitimate’ demands were not met.

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