Strike causes Rs 50-cr revenue loss to transport utilities

Strike causes Rs 50-cr revenue loss to transport utilities

Strike causes Rs 50-cr revenue loss to transport utilities

The longest strike by transport employees in Karnataka caused a notional loss of Rs 50 crore for the state transport corporations. A senior transport official said it was one of the longest protests by the workers’ union in its history.

“Protests by unions previously lasted for a day and in some cases two days. In 1997, when the KSRTC was divided into four corporations including BMTC, there was a protest for almost two-and-half days. This is first time that the protest, which started on Sunday evening, went on till Wednesday evening,” he said.

Talks with the unions were deadlocked for three days till the government agreed to hike wages by 12.5 % on Wednesday evening.

As a result of the strike, lakhs of commuters had to use alternative means of transport while the state government was forced to declare a holiday for schools and colleges in many districts in the state, including Bengaluru.

Meanwhile, KSRTC managing director Rajender Kumar Kataria told Deccan Herald  that all the four STCs earn Rs 50 crore every day. Due to the strike, the STCs lost Rs 50 crore revenue.

‘Working people hit’

With 6,242 BMTC buses staying off the roads for almost three consecutive days, 50 lakh commuters were put to hardship everyday in the city. Apart from increasing traffic congestion, the strike meant that many commuters had to spend more on alternative modes of transport.

Premalatha G, a resident of Rajajinagar said she spent Rs 200 for the last three days to reach her office on Cunningham Road in a shared auto.

“I had already spent Rs 1,050 on the BMTC monthly pass and I had to shell out extra money in the past three days. The government does not understand that for many people, Rs 200 matters a lot,” she said.

Similarly, Rajesh Raju, a shop owner in Basavanagudi said he earned Rs 300 daily while he had to spend almost all his income on transport.

“When MPs and MLAs can double their salaries, why can’t the government do it for its employees? It’s not the union leaders but elected representatives who have no concern for the people,” he opined.

A domestic help from Yeshwantpur said she earns Rs 4,500 a month and had to spend Rs 350 in the past three days on autorickshaws.