TMT employees go on strike to protest extension of BEST bus services

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Thane, Nov 5 (UNI) Thousands of employees of the Thane Municipal Transport (TMT) undertaking today struck work in protest of allowing the Brihanmumbai Electric Supply and Transport (BEST) undertaking to extend their services into the city.

Hundreds of TMT buses were grounded to press for various other demands of the employees, throwing the normal life out of gear.

The striking employees, led by the Union leader Sharad Rao, have planned a day-long 'dharna' in front of the Thane Municipal Corporation (TMC) headquarters to press for their demands.

The BEST was to extend their bus services in Thane from today.

However, the TMT employees, apprehending that they may lose their jobs, are opposing it. Earlier, the BEST services were restricted till Mulund, a far-flung eastern suburb.

After the TMT pulled out their bus services off the road at midnight last night, the autorickshaws have also joined them.

The decision to extend the BEST services in Thane was taken as the TMT failed to cater to the ever-growing population of the city.

The city needs more than 400 buses to provide proper transport services. However, it has only 200-odd buses, of which only 160 are in operation.

Initially, the ruling Shiv Sena had opposed the move. But, later deputy chairman of the Legislative Council and NCP leader Vasant Davkhare met Shiv Sena executive president Uddhav Thackeray and apprise him about the woes of the people. Finally, Uddhav gave a green signal to the proposal.

The agitated TMT employees a couple of days ago had manhandled Deputy Transport Manager Kamlakar Dixit and had also smashed his car.


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