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Bus Strike: High Court Snubs Govt, Orders JAC To Talk

The High Court today ordered the RTC leaders to once again hold talks with the management over 21 demands, and skip the demand for the merger of the TSRTC with the government.
Hyderabad | 28th October 2019
The High Court today ordered the TSRTC employees' JAC leaders to once again hold talks with the TSRTC management over 21 demands, which excluded the demand for the merger of the TSRTC with the Telangana government.

The court then adjourned the case to October 29 (tomorrow) at 2:30 pm.

The High Court gave this direction after the first round of talks on October 26 between the TSRTC management and the TSRTC employees' JAC failed.

The Additional Advocate General of the Telangana government said that the JAC leaders were forcing the TSRTC management to hold talks on all of the employee unions' demands, including the merger of the TSRTC with the State government, and had declined to discuss just the 21 demands suggested by the HC. And when the TSRTC management declined to discuss the merger, the JAC leaders had walked out of the meeting abruptly.

Responding to this, the court asked the JAC leaders why they didn't discuss the 21 other demands.

It reminded the two parties that no problem could be solved in an overnight, and asked the trade unions to set aside the merger demand for now and discuss the 21 demands which would not have a major financial burden on the TSRTC, and work to quickly end the strike since otherwise both the RTC employees and the people would face problems.

The court also asked the JAC leaders how the merger of the RTC would be possible overnight for the State government.

TSRTC employees' JAC advocate Prakash claimed that the RTC management had misinterpreted the High Court's directives. He said that the RTC officials had made it clear that they would discuss only the 21 demands and not the other demands, while the JAC leaders felt that there was nothing wrong in discussing all the demands, irrespective of whether the RTC management would grant them or not. He also told the court that the corporation was not incurring losses due to the employees, and that there were losses to the tune of Rs 2.5 crore each day due to subsidy bus passes itself. He also told the court that the dues from the government and the GHMC to the corporation stood at a staggering Rs 4,967 crore.

The Additional Advocate General told the court that the committee constituted by the State government had studied the 21 demands and found that 16 of even those had financial implications. He told the court that the financial condition of the corporation was not sound enough to fulfill those demands.

This has prompted the court to express its anger over the fact that four of the 21 demands needed Rs 46 crore - the court asked why the State government couldn't fund that kind of money when it spent thousands of crores on various government schemes, and when it anyway owed Rs 4,000+ crores to the corporation.

However, the AAG told the court that the State government would not give the stated amount to the corporation, prompting the court to warn the counsel that it would summon the Chief Secretary to the court on the issue.

Meanwhile, the TSRTC employees' strike entered its 24th day today.
filed in:  Telangana, High Court, Telangana High Court, Courts, Legal, Strikes, Bus Strike, Transport, Buses, TSRTC
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