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MTC unions warn of strike if talks aren't announced

MTC unions warn of strike if talks aren't announced
Chennai: Bus services in the city may be affected any time after March 3, if the government does not announce a date within a fortnight for talks with transport trade unions on wage revision and other demands.

Around 20 unions submitted the strike notice to the MTC on Monday.

“Though there were rumours that the government is planning to invite us for talks on March 2, we have not got any official communication,” said P. Balakrishnan, general secretary, CITU, MTC branch.

On February 14, the unions conducted agitations in front of zonal transport corporation offices across the State. “It has been over a year since we submitted our demands to the government.

As the government did not invite us for talks, we gave strike notice on December 5 and began our protest from December 28,” he added.

The strike was withdrawn after transport minister V. Senthil Balaji met the unions on December 31 and assured them that a committee would be formed to discuss the demands.

“It has been over 40 days since the committee was formed. On February 11, all the unions were called for a meeting. But, we were again asked for petitions,” he added.

Date not announced

The committee also did not announce a date for holding talks on the demands. “During the last strike, 98 per cent of the buses did not ply. We do not want the public to suffer.

“The government should also think similarly and announce dates for talks at the earliest.

“We are unsure about why they are avoiding even discussing our demands,” said K. Natarajan, treasurer, Labour Progressive Federation (LPF).
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