Mumbai Commuters May Face Inconvenience Today as BEST Workers Go on Strike
The BEST management has declared the strike “illegal” and issued internal circulars warning staffers of strict action against all participants.
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Mumbai: Brihanmumbai Electricity Supply and Transport (BEST) buses will not ply from 5 am today (January 8) as nearly 35,000 workers are on strike after talks with the management failed on Friday evening.
As per the latest information from BMC control room, BEST buses will be on an indefinite strike from 5 am this morning.— Mumbai Police (@MumbaiPolice) January 7, 2019
According to a Times of India report, if the employees go ahead with the strike then the union is expected to lose about Rs 3 crore of daily earnings from tickets and leave nearly 25 lakh commuters stranded in the absence of red buses.
To avoid damages to its buses, BEST has put wire mesh on windshields of several buses, but no information has been released about the steps taken for the convenience of passengers.
The BEST management has declared the strike “illegal” and issued internal circulars warning staffers of strict action against all participants. It has further admonished to invoke the Maharashtra Essential Services Maintenance Act (MESMA) under which union leaders can face imprisonment.
While all commuters are staunchly opposing the strike, the Aamchi Mumbai Aamchi BEST (AMAB), an independent citizens’ forum, has admitted some of the demands are “genuine”. AMAB has also decided to back the primary demand of the workers for a merger of BMC and BEST budgets, the report said.
The organisation has asserted that just like issues of healthcare, education, water supply, waste disposal, public transport too must not be profit-driven, but function to meet the basic needs of a society.
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