People across Punjab will face inconvenience as contractual employees of the state-owned Punjab Roadways have announced to go on a three day strike from July 2 in support of their demands, including regularisation of their services and a hike in salaries.
As many as 1,560 buses of PUNBUS will remain off road for three days across the state. On the first day of the strike, the protesting union workers are laying siege to bus stands across the state for three hours from 9am till noon. They will also burn the effigies of state transport minister Razia Sultana.
“Since we don’t want to pose any inconvenience to the public, we will only be blocking the bus stands for three hours on the first day,” said Resham Singh, state president of the Punjab Roadway Punbus Contractual Workers Union.
The union is demanding that the government abolishes the outsourcing system and hiring the existing outsourced workers on contract.
The protesting Punbus employees are also demanding the government revoke the 2014 notification issued by the transport department, which has a provision of blacklisting any employee if maximum three discrepancies are reported against him.
Resham said that during a meeting with the state transport minister on June 21, the government agreed to fulfil their demand of abolishing outsourcing system along with revoking the notification that blacklists Punbus workers. “The minister had assured us that she will talk to chief minister Captain Amarinder Singh about our demands and resolve the matter within 10 days. After the minister’s assurance, we even cancelled our June 28 protest in which the union had planned to hold a protest at the bus stands in Amritsar, Ludhiana and Jalandhar,” said the union president. “On June 27, state transport director state transport Tejinder Singh Dhaliwal told us that the department will not accede to our demands,” he added.
There are 18,050 conductors, 18,050 drivers and 250 workshops in the state.