The leave of all SLTB bus drivers, conductors and mechanical staff have been cancelled until the planned strike by private bus operators is called off, the Sri Lanka Transport Board (SLTB) announced today. SLTB Chairman Ramal Siriwardena said that the board has taken steps to provide 24 hour bus service and that relevant officials have been instructed to operate buses according to the needs of passengers and not according to the time table.
Several private bus associations, protesting the revised bus fares, have decided to launch a strike from midnight today (16).Cabinet yesterday approved an increase in bus fares by 6.56% with effect from today, however no change was made to the current minimum fare of Rs 10.
Inter-Provincial Bus Owners’ Association, All-Island Private Bus Owners’ Federation (AIPBOF) and Lanka Private Bus Owners’ Association (LPBOA) have decided to launch a strike protesting the decision taken by the Cabinet. The All-Island Private Bus Owners’ Federation is to launch a strike from midnight today (16) demanding a 20% increase in bus fares and to raise the minimum fare to Rs 15. The Inter-Provincial Bus Owners’ Association has decided to join the strike over the same demands. Secretary of All-Island Private Bus Owners’ Federation Gemunu Wijeratne said that they will launch the strike from midnight today.
Meanwhile, the Deputy Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation Ashok Abeysinghe met with the bus associations today, to hold discussions regarding the bus fare revisions.