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Bombay high court slams motormen's strike

May 04, 2010 21:05 IST

The Bombay high court on Tuesday slammed the striking railway motormen, saying they had held the entire city to ransom, which was not permissible.

The court directed the striking motormen of Central and Western Railways to resume duties forthwith; but after this order was dictated, the court was informed that the stir over wage hike has been called off.

The strike, which began on Monday, had paralysed the suburban train services, the financial capital's lifeline, and caused hardship to lakhs of commuters.

A division bench of Acting Chief Justice J N Patel and Justice S C Dharmadhikari asked the Union government to confirm this, adjourning the matter till Wednesday.

Earlier in the day, the Centre had moved the high court, seeking a direction to the motormen to resume duties. Additional Solicitor General Darius Khambata told the court that the negotiations with motormen over their demands were underway when the sudden strike was called.

The recognised railway unions were not supporting the strike. Passing the order in the afternoon, the HC said, "Situation in the city shocks the conscience of the court. A few people have held the city to ransom and disrupted normal life by adopting means which can not be permitted".

It asked the motormen to resume duties immediately, and assured their "rights would be protected if they complied with the court's order and "no harm would visit them".

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