The court’s order come on day two of the bus strike.

Return to work or face action Madras HC orders striking TN state transport staffImage for representation
news Law Tuesday, May 16, 2017 - 19:28

The Madurai bench of the Madras High Court on Tuesday ordered the striking employees of the Tamil Nadu State Transport Corporation to return to work or immediately or face disciplinary action under the Essential Services Maintenance Act.

A division bench comprising of Justice M V Muralidharan and Justice N Seshasayee passed the orders on a PIL filed by a lawyer named Senthil Kumarayya, who demanded that the staff return to work as it was affecting the public.

Directing the Centre and the state government to take necessary action, the High Court ordered, “If the employees fail to resume work as per the order of this court, the Central government and Tamil Nadu government are directed to take necessary action against them under the Essential Services Maintenance Act and to invoke the power of disciplinary action and also penal action against the violators of the above Act.”

The bench also directed the Home Secretary, the Tamil Nadu Chief Secretary, TNSTC's Principal secretary and DGP to file a compliance report by 10.30 am on Wednesday.

The High Court’s orders come on the second day of the bus strike, which was called by all trade unions of TNSTC, barring the Anna Tholilalar Sangam, affiliated to the AIADMK.

On Tuesday, bus services continued to be affected across the state. While many chose to travel by autos and taxis, the state government ramped up services by engaging private operators in Chennai.

A Soundarajan, CITU president, had earlier told TNM, “For the last four years, the transport department has been incurring losses. The expenditure has been much more than the income. We make losses of Rs 5 crore per day. Also, the government is not providing retirement benefits like PF and pension. We are going to protest till government provides a solution.”

The strike, believed to be the biggest in over a decade, was announced after multiple round of talks between the Tamil Nadu State Transport Corporation and Transport Minister MR Vijayabhaskar hit a dead end on Sunday.

 

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