Private buses in Odisha to go off roads again from October 20

Bhubaneswar: Private bus owner’s association in Odisha today decided to go on strike again for an indefinite period from October 20 as the State government seems to be in no mood to consider the outfit’s charter of demands, the association secretary Debendra Sahu said mediapersons.

During a discussion on October 9 at Chief Minister’s grievance cell, the CMO had assured us that buses under the LAccMI scheme will run from panchayats to blocks but will not run from blocks to the district headquarters. Accordingly, we had put our previous strike scheduled for October 10 on hold till October 30. Unfortunately, the State government ran buses just two days after the meeting held with us. Hence, it raised doubts in our minds and we felt that the Government does not keep its word,” the association secretary expressed while replying to a question of mediapersons as to why the talk failed.

“It is not possible to run private buses in such a circumstance and the decision to go for a strike again was taken in a General Body meeting of the association today. The strike will begin from 6.00 am on October 20 and continue for an indefinite period,” secretary Sahu asserted.

It is pertinent to mention, the association had initially called for a cease-wheel (Chaka-Bandh) agitation across Odisha from October 10. Subsequently, the outfit had a discussion with 5T Secretary VK Pandian in the virtual mode in the presence of Jajpur MLA Pranab Prakash Das, Capital Region Urban Transport (CRUT) Managing Director Arun Kumar Bothra and Transport Commissioner Amitabh Thakur. After this, the strike was put on hold till October 31.

The strike was called opposing LAccMI scheme of the Odisha Government, which was launched on October 12. The association had also previously decided to go on an indefinite strike across the State, in its General Body meeting held on September 27.

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