Saturday, February 27, 2010

Petroleum price hike: Transport workers, bus owners to strike

T�PURAM: Protesting the petroleum price hike, transport workers unions in Kerala Saturday declared a one-day strike on March 2 while bus owners threatened to go on an indefinite strike from March 11 demanding immediate fare hike.

The co-ordination committee of private bus owners, which met in Thrissur, announced that all private buses running in Kerala would suspend services from March 11, unless the state government conceded to their demand.

A joint meeting of pro-Left Transport workers unions in Kozhikode said all transport workers, including bus crew, lorries, taxis and autorickshaws would strike work on Tuesday demanding rollback of hike in diesel and petrol prices.

\"Our demand for fare revision is a long-pending one. Now we are not in a position to carry on with operations with the latest fuel price hike. We are giving the state government enough time to agree to our demand,\" leaders of the bus owners Joint Action Committee said in Thrissur.

In the present situation, the minimum charge should be raised to Rs 5 from Rs 3.50 and per km rate fixed at 60 paise, they said.

Reacting to the Union budget, Transport Minister Jose Thettayil said Friday that the fuel price hike had made the bus fare increase inevitable.

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