Hyderabad MP and All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) President Asaduddin Owaisi reacted to the ongoing strike by workers of the Telangana State Road Transport Corporation (TSRTC) on Saturday night.
He was speaking hours after the state government, led by Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao, announced the privatisation of 5,100, or 50 per cent, of RTC routes in the state. The decision came in response to the ongoing indefinite strike by over 48,000 employees, demanding the TSRTC's merger into the government.
Addressing a gathering in Hyderabad, Owaisi said, "I understand your pain and appeal to you to consider the offer put forward by the Chief Minister. It is very unfortunate that some workers of the RTC have killed themselves during the ongoing strike."
"Don't take your lives. Please consider and accept the proposal put forward by the CM and sit for talks with the government. Do not get swayed by Congress and BJP leaders. This land is yours, Telangana belongs to you," he added, expressing hope that the deadlock is broken soon.
Owaisi also had a special request for the Chief Minister.
"I urge Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao that though he is privatising the RTC, the 'Z' in the number plates of RTC buses must not be removed, as it comes from the name of Zehra, the mother of Mir Osman Ali Khan, the last Nizam of Hyderabad. It is a part of Hyderabad's history," he said.
AIMIM President Barrister Asaduddin Owaisi asks #TSRTC union to accept CM KCR's offer and said if CM is privatising RTC but Z in the number plate of RTC busses shouldn't be removed, it is Zehra the name of late Nizam King of Deccan mother's name. pic.twitter.com/OHuM2C5QXo— Syed Sulaiman (@syedsulaiman92) November 3, 2019
Meanwhile, KCR, who has been unwilling to hold talks with the employees, issued an ultimatum to the striking workers to resume their duties in the next three days.
"If they don't return to work by November 5 midnight, we will privatise remaining 5,000 routes," he said.
KCR said the decision to privatise the routes was irrevocable as the state was empowered to do so under the Motor Vehicles Act, 2019.