Chennai: Hefty salary cuts are being imposed on the employees of the state transport corporations who had struck work earlier this month as the government has applied the ‘no-work-no-pay’ norm to them. Over a lakh transport employees had been on strike during Jan 5-11 demanding increased wages and retirement benefits.
Not all the workers remained on strike till the agitation was called off late Jan 11, so the salary cuts would affect the most only for those who remained off duty for the entire strike period, clarified a senior transport official.
He said the salary cuts could range between Rs 3500 and Rs 10,000, depending on the salary drawn for each worker and the period of his/her strike. The circular regarding the salary cuts had been sent to the managing directors of all the eight state transport corporations.
“This decision has jolted us”, said M. Shanmugam of the Labour Progressive Front, the opposition DMK’s labour wing. “We will discuss this with the other unions and move the high court on Monday”.
When the state transport minister M.R. Vijayabhaskar told the strikers they would not face punishment if they returned to duty, it appeared that the transport workers assumed that their period of strike would be treated as duty and there would be no salary cuts. But the government circular announcing the hefty cuts has now come as a big shocker.