Chandigarh, September 6
The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) Punjab has supported the state-level strike by the contract workers and outsourced workers of Punbus, PRTC and Punjab Roadways on Monday. Standing in favor of the transport workers, senior party leader and Deputy Leader of Opposition Saravjit Kaur Manuke alleged that the Congress government was sacrificing the government bus service by kneeling before the transport mafia.
In a statement issued from the party headquarters here on Monday, Saravjit Kaur Manuke alleged, “To promote the private transport mafia in Punjab, the Congress government is sinking the fleet of government transport in the same way as the previous Badal government.” She said that Captain Amarinder Singh along with the Badals had destroyed the Punjab Roadways and Pepsu Road Transport Corporation (PRTC) which had deprived thousands of youth in the state of government jobs and government transport services in remote rural areas have come to a complete standstill.
The AAP leader further said that institutions like Punjab Roadways and Pepsu Road Transport Corporation were once the pride and glory of Punjab. “These agencies also operated buses on public service routes which were considered as loss-making routes. The condition of transport facilities is such that private bus owners do not run buses on the deficit routes and government buses are not able to provide services. Due to this, the people of the state are facing huge difficulties for transportation,” she added.
Manuke said that demands like regularization of striking workers of Punjab Roadways, Punbus, and PRTC, the addition of 10,000 new buses in the government fleet, and reinstatement of dismissed workers in minor cases were legitimate. She said providing government jobs to the youth was far away; even the contract employees were not regularized. “The government should immediately regularize contract and outsourced workers who have been working for meager wages for a long time,” she added.
She said the Congress government had decided to provide free bus service to women on the lines of the AAP government in Delhi, but due to the lack of government buses; this facility has become a joke. Manuke said that due to the strike, the common man had to face a lot of hardships for which the Congress government was responsible. She said that Punjab’s exchequer was losing money due to investigations and dharnas, but it did not fall on the deaf ears of the Congress government.
Saravjit Kaur Manuke questioned, “On the one hand government buses are in deficit, then why has the number of buses of the Badals and Majithia increased in the Congress rule?” She alleged that senior leaders of the ruling party were also involved in the transport mafia. Manuke said with the formation of the AAP government, government transport would be transformed on the lines of the Delhi government and regular recruitment will be arranged by stopping contract recruitment.