Chennai, July 1: Hundreds and thousands of commuters, especially school
students and office goers were stranded as employees of the Metropolitan Transport
Corporation (MTC), operating bus services in Chennai city and suburbs, went on a
flash strike over non-payment of last month's salary.
Drivers and conductors, owing allegiance to the Opposition-affiliated Unions, went
on strike following reports that only 60 per cent of the salary would be paid and the
rest by the month-end.The unannounced and snap strike led to non-operation of buses from several depots, including Ambattur, Avadi, Poonamallee, Anna Nagar West, T.Nagar and Iyyappanthangal.
Because of the strike, heavy crowds were seen in suburban EMU train services on the
Chennai Beach-Tambaram and Chennai Central-Avadi-Tiruvallur and Arakkonam sections.A UNI correspondent, who visited the T.Nagar depot, saw several buses parked inside and outside the terminus and several commuters stranded on the road.
Meanwhile, a MTC official said the strike was due to spreading of rumours that only a
portion of the salary would be paid.
The MTC department have initiated talks with the leaders of the Opposition DMK-led
Labour Progressive Front (LPF) and the Centre for Indian Trade Unions (CITU) to end
the impasse.Meanwhile, Transport Minister M.R. Vijaybhaskar assured the union leaders that full salary would be disbursed by this evening and appealed them to call of their strike and return to work in the interest of commuters. (UNI)