The Bengaluru Metro Rail Corporation Limited (BMRCL) employeesâ€™ union threatened to go on an indefinite strike from March 22 over several demands, including higher wages and greater recognition for the union.
The union has printed 10,000 leaflets, which it will distribute it to the public to explain their decision to halt Metro train operations.
Nearly 900 of the 1,200 Metro employees are affiliated with the Bangalore Metro Rail Employees Union. Over 70 employees, accompanied by union leaders, organised a press briefing on Friday with some even wearing black protest badges.
â€śLet the management invite us for talks and take steps to solve our demands. We will call off the strike the very next minute. We are forced to go on a strike because of the management,â€ť Legal advisor to the union, D Leelakrishnan, told TNIE.
The Union had earlier written to the Managing Director of the BMRCL on Wednesday, issuing a notice that it would â€śgo on strike on and from March 22.â€ť The letter explained the rationale behind the strike and the various issues plaguing the union. It also pointed out that the corporation had ignored the concerns raised by employees.
The BMRCL had responded saying that metro services are declared as essential services under the Essential Services Maintanence Act (ESMA).â€śAll persons in the employment of the metro railways are deemed to be public servants within the meaning of Section 21 of the Indian Penal Code as per Section 90 of Metro Railway Operations and Maintenance Act 2002, and so they are prohibited from taking any action which jeopardises the metro services putting the commuters in difficulties and causing inconvenience to people,â€ť Mahendra Jain, Managing Director of BMRCL, said in a press release.
However, it does not appear to have deterred union members from going ahead with the strike later this month.