Tribune News Service
Chandigarh, October 21
There seems to be no end to the woes of the commuters in Haryana as the bus strike will continue tomorrow with the talks between the Haryana Roadways employees unions and the Haryana government failed on Sunday.
After more than five-hour marathon talks between a delegation of the Haryana Roadways Talmel Committee and a team of senior officers of the Haryana, Rajesh Khullar, Principal Secretary to CM, assured the union leaders that a meeting between committee and the Chief Minister would be arranged soon to arrive at a solution.
In all five rounds of talks today, the union leaders wanted the state government to scrap the kilometres scheme under which the state government wanted to run 700 buses by private players.
Preliminary talks were held between a team of officers led by Pankaj Aggarwal, State Transport Commissioner, and agitating employees led by Sarbat Singh Punia and Hari Narayan Sharma, members of the Haryana Roadways Talmel Committee. Later, the government delegation was joined by Rajesh Khullar, Principal Secretary to CM, and Dhanpat Singh, Additional Chief Secretary (Transport).
A proposal by the government delegation that the Transport Department was being converted into a corporation to cut down losses was strongly opposed by the union leaders triggering a walkout by the union leaders. They were later persuaded by the government officers to come back and the talks resumed.
Sources said the committee alleged large-scale irregularities in the kilometre scheme to which the government delegation assured an impartial inquiry. The union leaders were adamant that the state government first scrap the kilometre scheme, a demand which was not acceded to by the government delegation.
The committee asserted that the transport employees were ready to pool their five-day salary per month for the purchase of new buses, provided the state government scrapped the kilometre scheme first. In view of the stalemate, Khullar promised that a meeting of the committee would be arranged with the CM.
Meanwhile, the Haryana Sahkari Parivahan Samiti Kalyan Sangh, refuted reports that it had extended support to the strike by the Haryana Roadways strike. "We have nothing to do with the roadways strike and 1,059 buses of the cooperative societies were running as per schedule," sangh president Sunil Kumar asserted.
Powermen on strike
Meanwhile, members of the Haryana State Electricity Board Workers Union have decided to go strike from Sunday midnight in support of the demands of the Haryana Roadways workers, press secretary of the union Vijaypal Jakhar said.
Sarv Karamchari Sangh to meet today
An emergency meeting of the Sarv Karmachari Sangh will be held on Monday to chalk out future course of action after the failure of talks with the state government today. The meeting will a call on intensifying the agitation against state government's 'dictatorial attitude' towards employees' demands, Subhash Lamba, general secretary, said.
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