The unions had asked the government to announce the employees of transport corporations as government staff and to settle the DA arrears of retired employees. “Amicable decision will be taken by the Chief Minister,” Vijayabhaskar told reporters after the meeting.
The Transport Department and the unions had commenced formal talks for the 14th wage revision in January and the second meeting was held in Chennai on Thursday. During the first meeting, the unions had refused to continue the talks citing the absence of the Minister.
Vijayabhaskar added that the government had settled retirement benefits of Rs 912 crore the previous month and the process was underway to settle Rs 560 crore to the retired staff.
“Next round of talks will be held next week. While other State governments reduced the salaries of the Transport Department during the COVID-19 lockdown, the Tamil Nadu government gave full salary to the employees. Transport corporations are not for profit, they are for service,” he said.
The eight State Transport Corporations have about 1.25 lakh employees. The State government had commenced wage talks on January 6 after the employees’ unions announced a statewide strike. With the 13th wage agreement lapsing in August 2019, the trade unions have been continuously protesting, urging the management to start the discussion.