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Friday, 02 December 2016 - 6:58
Private bus strike commences; Additional 6500 SLTB buses deployed
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Thousands of private bus drivers and assistants commenced their strike midnight yesterday (01) crippling day to day activities across the island.

The strike is carried out by 28 trade unions including bus and three-wheeler unions, President of the All Ceylon Private Bus Federation Stanley Fernando said.

Strike was launched demanding the cancellation of the increase of the minimum fine to Rs. 25,000 for seven offences. These seven offences included driving without valid driving license, driving without an insurance certificate, overtaking on the left hand side, high speed driving and driving under the influence of alcohol.

Representatives of the striking trade unions met the President at the Parliament complex yesterday for a discussion.  

An amendment to the fines charged for overtaking on the left hand side and high speed driving was promised during this discussion, President of the Lanka Private Bus Owners' Association Gemunu Wijeratne said. He added that his trade union will not take part in the strike.

Meanwhile, the Deputy Minister of Transport Ashoka Abeysinghe said the government is equipped to handle a strike by private bus unions. He said that 6500 extra buses were deployed.

Similarly National Transport Commission Chairman H. Hemachandra said that additional buses had been deployed to prevent inconvenience to the people. 

The NTC chairman also stated that police were taking measures to provide necessary security.

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