Suburban commuters on Western Railway had a harrowing time as motormen went on a flash strike during evening peak hour. The strike crippled the serviced leading to cancellation of ten trains.
As an angry crowd of commuters swelled at Churchgate protesting, additional police force was called on to avoid a law and order problem.
“Motormen earn Rs 1 lakh per month and still don’t want to work. How can a handful of people hold the city to ransom like this?” asked Nayana Lopez, a commuter from Borivli.
The strike was an outcome of an ongoing dispute between motormen and train guards.. The motormen have demanded a salary higher.
On Wednesday, some motormen either reported sick or did not report for work. As a result services came to a standstill after 5:49pm.
The motormen were protesting after CS Santwani, a motorman, was suspensed for delaying a train after he had a disagreement with the train’s guard in the morning. The train, on its way to Mumbai Central yard, was held up at the station for more than 25 minutes, delaying all trains after it. A railways inquiry revealed that motorman was at fault and suspended him. The suspension was revoked later.
WR chief spokesperson SS Gupta said, “Services were affected between 5:49pm and 6:15pm. Ten trains were cancelled. The reason for cancellations was that motormen did not report to work.”