Train strike Police ordered to probe 11 employees

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By 2017-10-13

By Shaahidah Riza

Transport Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva has ordered a special Police investigation into 11 railway employees who had staged a strike on Wednesday severely disrupting train services throughout the country, a ministry spokesman said.

He went on to note that special measures will be taken to facilitate an alternative transport service for commuters who will be inconvenienced due to strikes staged by railway trade unions.

At a meeting held yesterday with top most officials with the Railways Department officials and the National Transport Commission, Minister De Silva had emphasized that the strike, which was scheduled for midnight on 12 October, however took place instead at 5:00 p.m. on Wednesday (11), severely disrupting services and inconveniencing passengers.

Ministry spokesperson indicated that the Sri Lanka Transport Board (SLTB) had provided bus services between on the Colombo-Polgahawela and Galle-Negombo routes.

The NTC had also broadened the services of private buses. He went on to note that the leave of all SLTB employees have been cancelled.

However, 12 trains carrying fuel to Katunayake Airport had functioned without interruption. He added that the President had been informed and that necessary measure will be taken to resolve this issue. The Convener of the Railway Operation Supervisory Officers' Union Janaka Fernando noted that they are presently engaged in discussions with the President's Secretary.

Commenting on reports indicating that the ministry would declare the railway services an essential service, he added that the unions will address the issue with the President's Secretary.

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