Trade union strike in Delhi hits commuters as auto-rickshaws, taxis stay off roads

Written by PTI | New Delhi | Updated: Feb 21 2013, 19:01pm hrs
StrikeNoida: Protesters damaging a bus during a nation-wide strike called by traders union at an industrial area in phase-II of Noida. (PTI)
Trade union strike: Commuters in Delhi continued to face hardships for the second consecutive day today as majority of auto-rickshaws and taxis stayed off the road in support of the two-day nationwide strike called by 11 trade unions.

Students and office goers were the hardest hit as auto-rickshaw and taxi drivers either refused to go or overcharged.

Various industrial units and banks either remained closed or witnessed thin attendance while markets and commercial areas remained open.

Yesterday, the strike had evoked a mixed response.Five major auto-rickshaw and taxi unions in the city have joined the strike to demand a hike in auto and taxi fares.

Long queues were seen at metro stations. DTC services were near normal though a section of the employees extended support to the strike.

"It was difficult to travel in Metro as trains were jam-packed. Passengers even struggled to get inside the Rajiv Chowk Metro Station because of heavy rush," said Dipali, who travelled from Connaught Place to Delhi University.

The DTC has deployed over 5,000 buses to ferry passengers. Another 3,000 private buses including 1,870 mini buses, 283 Metro feeder buses and around 800 contract carriage buses were also pressed into service.

"I had wait to for a bus for around one hour as there were no taxis and auto-rickshaws available," said Ranjit Jha, a resident of Moti Bagh, who works at a government office in Central secretariat.

Delhi government has cancelled leave of all DTC employees and asked senior officials of the corporation to be at bus depots from early morning to ensure smooth operation of DTC bus service.