QChennai: TN Bus Strike Enters Sixth Day & More

Here is your roundup of the top stories from Chennai.

Published
India
4 min read
Members of the Tamil Nadu State Transport Corporation have been on strike since the night of 4 January.
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1. Minister Urges Workers to Call of TN Bus Strike, Resume Duty

The Tamil Nadu bus strike left commuters in the lurch, with auto-rickshaws and private cabs hiking rates for the day. 
The Tamil Nadu bus strike left commuters in the lurch, with auto-rickshaws and private cabs hiking rates for the day. 
(Photo Courtesy: The News Minute)

The transport workers' unions in Tamil Nadu continue their strike for the sixth day now amid demand for higher wages. The strike comes despite strict orders from Madras High Court to suspend the protest and resume services. Thousands of people were affected across Tamil Nadu as most buses stayed off the road.

MR Vijaya Bhaskar, Transport Minister of Tamil Nadu said they had conducted talks with trade unions for 23 times already and want the workers to join work immediately. He said that despite severe cash crunch, the government will dispense the salary increase of 2.44 percent.

Read the full story on The Quint.

2. TN Assembly Session: TTV Debuts as MLA; DMK Stages Walkout

DMK and Congress staged a walk out as the Governor made his first address at the House.
DMK and Congress staged a walk out as the Governor made his first address at the House.
(Photo Courtesy: Twitter/ @smitha_tarur)

The Tamil Nadu assembly recorded a chaotic start as it convened on 8 January, with DMK and Congress MLAs staging a walkout and demanding a floor test, saying the ruling AIADMK did not have requisite number of MLAs after 18 MLAs were disqualified.

The newly elected MLA TTV Dhinakaran was greeted by loud cheers and slogans hailing him as the next Chief minister of Tamil Nadu as he stepped out of the House after the session.

Read the full story on The Quint.

3. Probe Panel to Give Sasikala Access to Evidence Against Her

A source at the Commission said on Monday that Justice Arumughaswamy was ready to pass relevant orders but was awaiting the arrival of Sasikala’s lawyers.
A source at the Commission said on Monday that Justice Arumughaswamy was ready to pass relevant orders but was awaiting the arrival of Sasikala’s lawyers.
(Photo: The Quint)

The Justice A Arumughaswamy Commission of Inquiry, which is looking into the death of Jayalalithaa, is inclined to provide VK Sasikala with the details of evidence against her and a list of witnesses.

Sasikala’s lawyers had filed an application in this regard on Saturday. In the application which, in turn, was filed in response to summons issued to Sasikala on 21 December, she sought the testimonies of witnesses who had deposed against her, any evidence they placed before the Commission and the right to cross-examine them.

(Source: The Hindu)

4. Only 1 Smart City Project Completed in Chennai in 3 Years, Says Minister

The Central government has given nod for 173 projects under Smart City Mission, estimated at Rs 13,425 crore. 
The Central government has given nod for 173 projects under Smart City Mission, estimated at Rs 13,425 crore. 
(Photo Courtesy: iStockphoto)

Work on the Smart City Mission has been delayed because of the unwillingness of the Central government to relax norms, said Local Administration Minister SP Velumani.

Speaking at the first review meeting of Smart City Mission and AMRUT (Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation), Velumani admitted that most of the Smart City Mission projects had not taken off in the past three years in Chennai and nine other cities in the State. Claiming that the norms for taking up Smart City projects were very stringent, he said the State government had requested the Centre to relax norms to complete more civic projects such as sewerage and water supply.

(Source: The Hindu)

5. Buildings on Encroached Land Razed at Kottivakkam

This reservation was not disclosed to the purchasers who were supplied with a photocopy of the layout, which did not show the play area.
This reservation was not disclosed to the purchasers who were supplied with a photocopy of the layout, which did not show the play area.
(Photo Courtesy: IndiaSpend)

The Chennai Corporation, with the help of the Police and other departments, pulled down buildings that were built on an encroached piece of land — meant for a children’s play area — in Kottivakkam and reclaimed the land.

The encroachment came to light when Kottivakkam Vaidehi Nagar Residents’ Association took up the matter with the authorities to remove encroachments in 2011. According to the association, A Sonnie George, a real estate promoter, obtained approvals in 1968 for a layout measuring 3.48 acres of land from the Directorate of Town and Country Planning, Chengalpattu. A portion of the land was reserved for a children’s play area.

(Source: The Hindu)

6. Temporary Driver Arrested for Accident

Since regular workers have been on a strike, the government hired temporary drivers to run buses across the state.
Since regular workers have been on a strike, the government hired temporary drivers to run buses across the state.
(Photo: iStock)

The police on Monday arrested an MTC driver who was recently engaged as casual staff after the death of an 18-year-old two-wheeler rider in an accident near the Santhome High Road on Sunday.

The MTC bus driver, V Balakrishnan, 34, a resident of Kannagi Nagar, allegedly ran over Joseph alias Ajit, 18, a resident of Dumming Kuppam. The victim, who was overspeeding, applied the brakes suddenly. In the impact, he fell off the bike and the bus behind him ran over him. Ajit Kumar died on the spot. The Adyar Traffic Investigation police registered a case against Balakrishnan.

(Source: The Hindu)

7. 2 History-Sheeters Submit Appeal

Despite their petitions, the police said that they can’t let go of them as they are still receiving complaints from the residents.
Despite their petitions, the police said that they can’t let go of them as they are still receiving complaints from the residents.
(Photo: The Quint)

Two history-sheeters presented petitions in the Commissioner’s office requesting the police not to book any case against them since they wanted to lead a ‘reformed’ life. ‘Muttai’ Gopi, who is an accused in 40 criminal cases, said he was running a rental auto business and had been languishing in jail since the Kodungaiyur police booked a case against him in 2008.

Last week, Alphonse, who was allegedly involved in several house break-ins, also submitted a similar appeal to the Commissioner.

(Source: The Hindu)

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