Coronavirus outbreak: BEST not the best at planning, claim workers

Updated: Apr 10, 2020, 10:58 IST | Rajendra B Aklekar | Mumbai

Even as Coronavirus penetrates the workforce, memo over absenteeism scares extra staffers into reporting to work

This image has been used for representational purposes only
This image has been used for representational purposes only

While the city's lifeline BEST Undertaking is being praised for ferrying those employed in essential services even to far-flung suburbs like Badlapur and Titwala, workers were upset after the administration sent notices to absentees, which led to crowding at Dharavi bus depot on Tuesday morning. Trade unions are alleging that the BEST's planning has failed amid the Coronavirus crisis.

A union member said that the memo from the managers of the Dharavi depot scared the staffers. "There has been an utter lack of planning. Why can't the BEST allot duties to bus drivers and conductors in advance?" a union leader said.

The memo was issued as for the past one week, even the reduced services amid the lockdown were running at 50 per cent of their strength because of absenteeism. On Tuesday, for instance, only 1,153 of the scheduled 3,115 buses plied in the city.

Workers are also concerned after an employee of the Electric Supply branch tested positive for Coronavirus on April 2. Sources said that the employee had been admitted to a private hospital with a fever since March 16.

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