BENGALURU: Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation Ltd (BMRCL) is gearing up to ensure that the upcoming employees strike will not disrupt services. As a preventive measure, around 400 trainees, who have undergone three-four months of training, will be deputed to all operational stations and will also man the trains from 5am till closing of operations, internal sources said.
Employees, represented by a Union, have been threatening to go on an indefinite strike from Thursday if their demands are not met. The top-most demand is the recognition of the Union by BMRCL, something that the company is unwilling to do as it says that the Union has outside members. Talks between the two parties, through a conciliation process before the Assistant Labour Commissioner on Monday, did not result in a resolution.
“We will try and stick to the original schedule. We have 80 trainees who are qualified to operate the trains. The rest of them will man the stations. To our advantage, most of the operations are automated and can be controlled from the main operations centre. The trainees will only have to open and close the door,” a BMRCL official said. Asked if these trainees are equipped to deal with emergencies, the official said they had undergone briefings and will be assisted by the security staff, which is well-trained in the operations and won’t go on strike.
BMRCL is also likely to approach the police on Tuesday to ask for more security to help the new trainees function without threats from the Union. On Monday, there was a fear that the new trainees would be put under pressure or threatened. In the meantime, BMRCL submitted its observations to the Assistant Labour Commissioner on Monday and gave a point-by-point reply. According to the response, a copy of which is with The New Indian Express, the BMRCL said that it had kept its doors open to employees for discussions, but not for outsiders.