Striking employees of Telangana State Road Transport Corporation (TSRTC) on Monday intensified their indefinite protest against the sacking of over 40,000 employees by the state government, which entered Day 23 today.
The Joint Action Committee (JAC) of TSRTC have been on a strike since October 5 demanding merger of the corporation with the state government and revision of pays among other demands.
Speaking to , Md Sabir, TSRTC JAC member and driver said: "We have been protesting for nearly 24 days, yet chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao is unfazed by the situation and unwilling to help the workers. We have given a memorandum to the District Collector's office. Our chief minister cannot sack the RTC workers, so he should end his stubbornness and settle the issue as soon as possible."
Sabir further stated that "a total of 11 people had died since the protest began, including a conductor who hanged herself today."
He said that the chief minister should receive appropriate punishment stating that children of these employees did not get to celebrate the festivals of Diwali and Dusshera and that "his stubbornness will be his end."
Opposition parties including the BJP, Congress and CPI have extended support to this state-wide protest by the RTC workers and participated in the protest outside the District Collector's office.
V Hanumantha Rao, senior Congress Leader said: "The CM is behaving like a dictator. In other states chief ministers like JM Reddy have decided to merge with the RTC, yet the sole motive of the Telangana government is to get money."
"The interests of the government should be towards employment, but they have not given a single employment to anyone. Some of the employees were retired, yet no attempt has been made to fill their positions," he added.
Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao has said that there is "no question" of having any talks with the agitating 48,000 RTC employees.
Various political parties including have also come together in support of the RTC employees and are demanding the state government to take them back.
( With inputs from ANI )