Chennai, Jan 24: College students across Tamil Nadu continued to hold protests for the fifth day on Wednesday against the recent hike in bus fares, and demanded immediate rollback of the revision. Actor Kamal Haasan, who has announced his foray into politics, also hit out at the government on the issue.
Students held protests in Madurai, Thanjavur, Perambalur and Dindigul among others, with several of them boycotting classes opposing the government move, police said. Many students said the hike has 'severely' affected them and that many of them could not afford the 'manifold increase,' and therefore the demand for its rollback.
Haasan, who has taken on the ruling AIADMK over alleged corruption, also hit out at the K Palaniswami led government for hiking bus fares. In a tweet, he said if the government was pro-poor, it would have made all efforts to prevent the hike.
After a hiatus of six years, the state government had on January 19 hiked ticket fares of buses operated by state run transport corporations and private entities by about 20 to 54.54 per cent.
The government has hiked fares across categories such as mofussil, city, ordinary, express, ultra deluxe, Volvo and air-conditioned buses. The hike which came into effect from January 20 has triggered protests from day one with people hitting the streets at many places besides venting their anger on social media platforms against the "steep revision".
Termed as 'inevitable' by the government, the increase came in the wake of the recent eight-day strike by a section of transport employees unions in the state over wage revision. The agitation had severely affected public sector transport.