Pay hike will add Rs 700-crore annual burden on road transport corporations

Pay hike will add Rs 700-crore annual burden on road transport corporations

Govt revises wages for transport staff by 12.5%

Pay hike will add Rs 700-crore annual burden on road transport corporations

With a 12.5% hike in wages, the state road transport corporations (RTC) will have an additional financial implication of Rs 700 crore a year. This is in addition to the other allowances to employees, which is estimated to cost about Rs 40 crore annually.

The annual revenue of the four corporations is Rs 7,503 crore while the salary bill of its 1.23 lakh employees is Rs 3,566.59 crore a year, which is 47.53% of the revenue.

Normally, the four state RTCs go for wage revisions once in four years. While there was 5% and 6% hike in 2004 and 2008 respectively, the state government enhanced the salary by 10% in 2012. Meanwhile, the corporations had also increased dearness allowance (DA) and HRA (house rent allowance) that resulted in an additional cost of Rs 2, 201 crore.

Adopting a similar methodology, the state Cabinet approved an 8% revision of wages for employees of the four state RTCs with effect from January 1, 2016.

However, the workers union opposed the decision and called for an indefinite strike from July 25, demanding a 35% wage hike. In the subsequent meeting with union representatives on July 22, it was proposed to enhance the wage from 8% to 10%.

Further, it was agreed to examine and resolve other demands of the unions within a stipulated time. However, this did not go well with the transport unions, who went on a protest for three consecutive days. After many rounds of negotiations, it was decided to revise wages by up to 12.5%.

This means, a driver during the probationary period can take home a basic salary of Rs 12,435 while the total salary would be Rs 22,670 which includes provident fund (PF), DA and  HRA. The conductors would earn a basic of Rs 11,665 and total salary of Rs 21,270.

At present, the staff cost ratio of the corporations over the total annual turnover is about 47.5. With the proposed wage hike, the ratio of the staff cost will exceed 50 of the total annual turnover. This could, however, be brought down with increase in operational efficiency.

Record ridership on Metro

With buses off the roads, Namma Metro registered a record ridership in excess of two lakh on Wednesday. Train service on the Purple Line closed at 10.15 pm on Wednesday.

The Purple Line on normal days makes 116 trips. However, in the last three days, it made 136 trips each day. The Green Line made the usual 99 trips. Services on both lines will operate on normal schedule on Thursday. However, if the crowds are more, the Purple Line will operate at a frequency of five minutes.