The nationwide bandh called by the Congress party against rising fuel prices is likely to cripple transport services in the State.
Considering that the Congress’s alliance partner, JD(S), has supported the bandh call, it is largely believed that the strike will be effective in the State.
Public transport and cab aggregator taxis are likely to be off the roads. While metro services will be available, a few autorickshaw driver unions have not yet declared their stance. The airport taxi drivers’ association is yet to take a call on whether they will ply their vehicles.
While some private schools have declared a holiday, Karnataka Associated Managements of Primary and Secondary Schools has sent an advisory to schools to not declare a holiday as they have already lost several working days this academic year. They have, however, said that private schools can take a call depending on the local situation. No official holiday has been announced for government schools. Some schools have postponed their mid-semester examination as students may find it difficult to travel to the school.
Tanveer Pasha, an office-bearer of Ola, Taxi For Sure and Uber Drivers and Owners’ Association, claimed nearly 45,000 drivers would stay off the roads between 6 a.m. and 6 p.m.
H.V. Ananth Subbarao, general secretary of the KSRTC Staff and Workers’ Federation, said that the services of KSRTC would be affected from 6 a.m. to 3 p.m.
A section of auto drivers have decided not to support the bandh and said that their services would remain as usual. Manjunath, president of Adarsha Autorickshaw Drivers Union, said that as the LPG rates have not seen a substantial increase, they would not support the bandh call.
The Federation of Karnataka State Lorry Owners and Agents Association has decided to remain neutral towards the bandh call. Why they ‘oppose’ the rise in fuel prices, they didn’t want to be associated with a strike called by a political party.