Unions of the Telangana State Road Transport Corporation (TSRTC) have decided to call off their indefinite strike on Sunday after talks between the employees and the government succeeded.
The strike, which was scheduled to begin on June 11, was withdrawn after Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao approved an increase of 16% in the pay of employees as interim relief.
This came after union leaders spoke to a Cabinet sub-committee comprising of ministers KT Rama Rao, T Harish Rao, Etela Rajender, G Jagadish Reddy and P Mahender Reddy.
The ministers then met CM KCR at Pragathi Bhavan in Hyderabad and conveyed their demands.
â€śAs RTC staff played a historic role in Telangana movement, CM has special love for them. Hence, he directed us to announce 16% IR, despite the corporation making losses,â€ť KTR was quoted as saying.
Transport Minister Mahender Reddy said that the increase would add a burden of Rs 16 crore per month to the TSRTC, which already is under debt.
The employees were protesting against the governmentâ€™s failure to announce new recruitments, and have demanded a pay hike.
The employees have also asked the government to reimburse the Rs 1,500 crore it owes to the TSRTC. Employees allege that the financial crunch in the department is causing immense problems to retired employees who are yet to receive their dues and pension payments.
Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao had warned the employees last week against going on the strike.
â€śIf you go on strike, it will be the last day of strike in the history of TSRTC,â€ť he said. The CM also threatened that protesting employees would be removed immediately.
As per the Chief Ministerâ€™s statement, the TSRTC has nearly 53,000 employees, and if they abstain from work, the government would have incurred a loss of Rs 4 crore every day.