Auto Strike: Talks fail, drivers across Maharashtra except Thane on strike

Updated: Jul 08, 2019, 20:35 IST | Rajendra B. Aklekar

Autorickshaw drivers across Maharashtra, except parts of Thane, will go on an indefinite strike starting midnight of July 8.

Auto Strike: Talks fail, drivers across Maharashtra except Thane on strike
File pic

The talks between autorickshaw union leaders and senior officials from transport Maharashtra department remained inconclusive on Monday afternoon. Union leader Shashank Sharad Rao told mid-day at 7 pm that the strike was on in Maharashtra except for Thane because the trade unions affiliated to the Shiv Sena, which have a stronghold there, have not decided to join us. "It is their wish that they want to toe the party line, but the strike is on," Rao said.

The major demands include shutting down services like Ola and Uber, curbing the illegal auto menace, implementation of the Hakim Committee report, stricter control over the issuance of permits and setting up a welfare board for auto drivers that can give them facilities like Provident Fund and Employees State Insurance etc.

Besides, the union has also demanded to curb Ola, Uber or other app-based cab service and a minimum hike of Rs 4 to Rs 6 per km till June 30, currently, the minimum fare is Rs 18. They said the demands are as per the one-man state government appointed Hakim committee report.

"We had a meeting of state-wide auto representatives on June 9 and after deliberations drew up a list of demands approaching the government asking them to consider it in a month. The government has not acted for a month despite giving them notice," Rao told mid-day.

Autorickshaw drivers in Maharashtra have slapped a day's notice on the state government warning to go an indefinite strike from July 9 if the state government does not yield to their demands and call a meeting to discuss their long-pending issues by Monday. The major demands include shutting down services like Ola and Uber, curbing the illegal auto menace, implementation of the Hakim Committee report, stricter control over the issuance of permits and setting up a welfare board for auto drivers that can give them facilities like Provident Fund and Employees State Insurance.

Also Read: Shut Ola-Uber, give us PF, pension, Maharashtra automen threaten strike from July 9

Besides, the union has also demanded to curb of Ola, Uber or other app-based cab service and a minimum hike of Rs 4 to Rs 6 per km till June 30, currently, the minimum fare is Rs 18. They said the demands are as per the one-man state government appointed Hakim committee report. "We had a meeting of state-wide auto representatives on June 9 and after deliberations drew up a list of demands approaching the government asking them to consider it in a month. We are now again asking the government to call us for a meeting by July 8 to discuss what can be done about the demands. If the government fails to do it, we will be forced to proceed on an indefinite strike from the midnight of July 8, starting July 9," stated Shashank Sharad Rao, the president of the Autorickshaw Chalak Malak Samyukt Kruti Samiti, an umbrella forum of all auto trade unions in Maharashtra. There are 1.82 lakh rickshaws registered in Mumbai alone, while there are around 8.63 lakh across the state.

Also Read: Mumbai Rains: Wall collapses on autorickshaw stand in Chembur, no casualties reported

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