State transport minister Anil Parab on Monday told the striking employees of the Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporation (MSRTC) that they won’t get justice by threatening as they have to present their case in the High Court. “I have told the workers that this issue will be resolved through discussion. We will abide by the orders of the court. I have been telling the employees for many days to come to work and we will discuss,’’ Parab said.
His statement came when more than 3,000 employees have reported to work, while the BJP is issuing new ultimatums to the state government to accept the employees’ demand for the merger of the corporation with the state government.
Parab added that as per the HC directive the state government has already established a committee to look into the demands, including the merger. It will be appropriate to comment after receiving the committee’s report, he said. He reiterated that justice can’t be had by issuing threats of self-immolation.
Meanwhile, the MSRTC has continued to suspend the striking employees. It has suspended more than 125 employees in the last two days. As a result, the total number of suspended employees has surged to 2,178. As of Monday, 104 state transport buses, including Shivshahi and Shivneri, were plying across the state.
In a related development, the leader of opposition in the state council, Pravin Darekar asked the government to stop suspension and coercive actions asking employees to report to work. “If the government will not stop such actions, we will seal the MSRTC MD’s office and bring its functioning to a halt,” he warned.
The Union minister of state for health Bharati Pawar also urged Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray to revoke the suspension. “The government’s move to suspend MSRTC employees cannot be justified as their demands should be considered through dialogue,” she noted.
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