Normal life was affected in Kerala as public transport kept off the roads in support of the 24-hour nationwide motor-vehicle strike by transport unions to protest against the Motor Vehicles (Amendment) Bill.
The strike, against some provisions of the bill and rise in prices of petroleum products, began at midnight. The bill was passed by the Lok Sabha and is now awaiting Rajya Sabha’s approval.
Buses, autorickshaws, taxis, including online cab aggregators, are keeping off the roads. Contract vehicles and lorries are also participating in the strike.
To make matters worse for commuters, the buses of the Kerala State Road Transport Corporation are staying off the roads, demanding salary revision, disbursement of dearness allowance (DA) arrears and interim relief. The strike has been called by joint trade unions.
Long-distance train passengers arriving at Thampanoor railway station here this morning had a harrowing time waiting for hours to get transport. The city police had arranged vehicles to take the passengers, arriving at the railway station here from far-off places to various hospitals, bringing in some relief to the stranded commuters.
Attendance in government offices, especially the state secretariat, was hit. Only private vehicles like including cars and two-wheelers were seen plying in the roads.