Kochi: As normal life continued to be hit
for the second day on Wednesday in Kerala following the indefinite
strike by private bus operators, the state High Court rapped
the government for not taking appropriate action and warned
that the court would step in.
No government can keep mum and if the government was
not taking any steps, the court would step in to keep the
house in order, a Division bench, comprising Chief Justice SR
Bannurmath and Justice Thothathil B Radhakrishnan, warned.
"Why they are feeling shy to take appropriate action
to face the strike," the bench asked when a petition by Forum
for Awareness of Socio-Cultural Transformation (FAST), a
women`s organisation, came up before the court.
The petitioner had sought to cancel the permit of the
private bus operators and to invoke ESMA (Essential Service
Maintenance Act) against the operators.
The bench directed the government to inform the court
about steps taken by them to face the ongoing bus strike,
which, it said, also amounts to violation of license
conditions and was against the Motor Vehicle Act.
also clarified that the interim order to invoke ESMA against
the striking bus operators would be considered tomorrow.
Justice P N Ravindran had yesterday refused to hear
petitions by private bus owners for renewal of permits and
settlement of timings until they call off the strike.
The operators are demanding a fare hike.