The ‘industrial action’ planned across India on Tuesday might mean travelling hiccups for taxi and auto commuters in the city. Decrying the Centre’s ‘anti-worker’ policies, unions have decided to observe a one-day strike.
It has the official backing of the veteran leader Sharad Rao-led unions in the state. Operations of the BEST buses, State Transport buses and local trains, however, will remain unaffected.
“There is a phenomenal increase in inflation. To protest against this, 15 lakh automen and thousands of taximen will go off the streets for a day,” said auto union leader Sharad Rao. This time, however, taxi unions have decided not to back the strike. Anthony Quadros of the Mumbai Taximen’s Union said that taximen had to endure four strikes in the last three months.
At least eight other unions in the state have, however, backed the strike. KL Bajaj of the Centre of Indian Trade Unions said, “The national-level strike is to press for four crucial demands: implementing welfare measures for the 40 crore workers in the unorganised sector; controlling inflation and rising unemployment; and strengthening the rationing system.”
Drivers of the Meru fleet cabs went on an unannounced strike Monday evening, demanding a hike in fares. Sources said that a letter demanding a hike had been submitted to the state transport department months ago, but it got no response.
No official clarification about when the drivers will withdraw their strike was issued by the Meru management. It appears that they want the transport department to intervene.