AAMTA calls off chakka bandh in Assam today: Unions to call for strike in February if talks with government fail

The bandh was called to demand implementation of a welfare scheme for motor transport workers, apart from highlighting the harrassment of drivers and owners of taxis, buses and autos

FP Staff January 27, 2021 14:55:58 IST
AAMTA calls off chakka bandh in Assam today: Unions to call for strike in February if talks with government fail

Representational image. AFP

The All Assam Motor Transport Association (AAMTA) called off the 24-hour chakka bandh scheduled to be held on Wednesday after the state labour department assured that work on implementation of proposed welfare schemes is underway.

The bandh was to support private transport workers, who demanded implementation of a welfare scheme for workers in the state. They also claimed that those who worked with  taxis, buses, trucks, tankers, cabs, autos and rickshaws plying in Guwahati and other districts - both the drivers and the owners - are being harrassed.

According to reports, the protesting unions will hold discussions with government officials on Wednesday to resolve the standoff, failing which strikes will be observed in February. A joint statement issued by 11 protesting motor transport unions said, "There is no government scheme for the welfare of the transport workers, which implies that the government is yet to acknowledge the service of motor transport workers. On the contrary, transport workers are being harassed by new rules and regulations."

The statement also added, “The authorities led by the labour and transport commissioners had a meeting with the representatives of the state motor transport workers’ unions. Along with the welfare scheme, the authorities have assured to hold discussions to fulfil other demands of the motor transport unions as well. However, if the talks fail, we will resume our agitation programme."

The unions will hold a 48-hour chakka bandh starting 12 February and a 72-hour chakka bandh starting 25 February if the 28 January talks fail.

The association also expressed support for private company cab drivers, like Ola and Uber, who have claimed being paid lesser wages and their commission are being cut by 30 percent.

AAMTA had called an indefinite strike in October last year over demands for hikes in city bus fares, as operators said they were operating at 50 percent capacity at the earlier fares.

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