Jul 04, 2019

Railway strike ends Featured

Railway trade unions have decided to end their ongoing strike action following discussion held with the authorities today (04 July).

Representatives of trade unions met with the Transport Minister Arjuna Ranatunga and State Minister Ashoka Abeysinghe with talks ending in the afternoon.

speaking to reporters after the meeting, railway trade unions said that they have decided to call off the strike and resume train services as usual.

However, due to the island wide strike launched by railway workers, the train service was completely inactive from midnight on Wednesday (July 03).

Co-convener of the Railway Trade Union Alliance, S P Vithanage, has told BBC Sinhala Service that the strike was launched in protest of the political pressure exerted by the Transport Ministry authorities on the railway general manager.

General Manager of Railways Dilantha Fernando has suspended an employee who was found drunk while on duty.

Trade unions allege that authorities in the Ministry of Transport have pressured the GM of Railways to suspend the disciplinary action against him and reinstate him.

“Our only request is to grant the General Manager of Railways the authority to take disciplinary action and to take appropriate decisions as the head of the institution. This is a political attack, ”S P Vithanage added.

Grades of Railway employees joining strike:
Train drivers
Station Masters

Employees of all grades, including technicians

The General Manager of Railways has also handed over his resignation letter in the wake of this situation and it has not been approved yet.

A gazette notification has been issued to make the railway service an essential service.