The Uttarakhand High Court on Monday asked the state government to submit a reply within 24 hours detailing the steps it has taken to tackle the difficulties being faced by people due to ongoing strike of the private bus operators in the Kumaon region.A division bench of Justices Rajiv Sharma and Lok Pal Singh issued the notice while hearing a public interest litigation (PIL) filed by Ramnagar (Nainital district) resident Neeraj Tiwari, who has sought directions to the state government to end the strike, which entered 11th day on Monday, and imposition of essential services maintenance act (ESMA) on the bus operators if they don’t call off their strike. Dushyant Mainali, counsel of the petitioner, said the PIL highlighted that private buses cater to nearly 90 % of the passenger load in the hilly region. Due to the strike, the state roadways buses were getting overloaded, which could lead to road accidents.Mainali said that the HC sought reply from the state government by Tuesday on the strike and steps taken to tackle the difficulties being faced by the people. The private bus operators in Kumaon region are on indefinite strike demanding hike in the passenger fare at par with the fare charged by the buses of Uttarakhand Transport Corporation. The bus operators had met the state transport minister Yashpal Arya on Sunday, who assured them that government will increase passenger fare of private buses by 15 %. But they were not happy with the assurance and refused to call off the strike. Also, thousands of taxi operators will also go on strike from Tuesday in support of the ongoing agitation by the bus operators.