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KSRTC, BMTC staff protest against ESMA

KSRTC, BMTC staff protest against ESMA

[Updated 2014-01-17 14:20:00 ]

NewsKarnataka - Bangalore

Bangalore: The India Road Transport workers federation members, the employees of Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC) and Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC), autorickshaw and ambulance drivers took out a rally from Town Hall to Freedom Park via Mysore Bank Circle on Thursday, January 16.

The organizations protested against the State government plan to pass the ESMA - Essential Services Maintenance Bill, 2013.

B V Raghavendra, convenor of the All India Road Transport Workers’ Federation said that this is against democratic values. If this bill is passed, it will mean that public transport employees, auto rickshaw drivers etc, will not be able to protest or demand anything from the State government, he said.

The Karnataka ESMA (Essential Services Maintenance Act) was in force from 1994 to 2004. In 2013, the Act was reintroduced with the Karnataka Essential Services Maintenance Bill, 2013.


If the bill is made into an Act, it will mean that any protesting employees in the public transport sector can be arrested and jailed, without bail. The punishment is six months imprisonment and fine. Even those who support the protest through donations can be jailed which is unfair, noted  B V Raghavendra.

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