High court gives Diwali travellers ‘return’ gift: Orders MSRTC buses back on roads

Bombay high court termed the MSRTC strike illegal and ordered workers to resume duty. Buses began running from Pune at 1.30am on Saturday

pune Updated: Oct 22, 2017 22:43 IST
Shrinivas Deshpande
Shrinivas Deshpande
Hindustan Times, Pune
On Friday, the(Hindustan Times)

Pune Employees of the Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporation (MSRTC) called off their strike after four days.The decision was made late on Friday night by the union.On Friday, the Bombay high court termed the MSRTC strike illegal and ordered workers to resume duty.

The high court also directed the state government to form a committee to look into the issue and submit an interim report by November 15 and a final report on December 21.

At midnight October 16, before Diwali, MSRTC employees went on strike demanding a salary hike by 25 per cent and implementation of the seventh pay commission.

State transport minister Diwakar Raote told Hindustan Times that the high court held that this strike was illegal.

“We have to wait till Monday to get a detailed copy of the directions given by the high court. There is no need to worry now.There will be no inconvenience to those returning from Diwali celebrations," Raote said.

Shrinivas Joshi, Pune divisional controller said,"According to guidelines given by the Mumbai high court the first buses left from Pune to Chawasar, Pomgaon and Bhutawade at 1.30 am on Saturday. Now, all employees from 13 depots in Pune district have resumed their work."

The MSRTC Pune division lost ₹.4 crore in revenue during this strike. The Pune division earns around ₹1 crore revenue from 6,000 daily trips during the Diwali festival season,Joshi said.

Lakhs of passengers were affected by the strike. Nearly 10,000 travellers ply from Mumbai and Pune daily. The state transport ferries over 65 lakh passengers everyday. Nearly all of the 58,000 buses that run on different routes across the state were off the roads for four days.

First Published: Oct 21, 2017 16:49 IST