Rift between Transport Secretary, KSRTC CMD widens

The rift between the Principal Secretary, Transport, and the Chairman and Managing Director, Kerala State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC), over the release of Rs. 20 crore to the transport undertaking for disbursing salary and wages of July has widened despite intervention at the highest level.

In his order on August 4, Principal Secretary, Transport, K.R. Jyothilal released Rs. 20 crore without any condition unlike an order issued by him three days ago that put the KSRTC management in the dock.

But, the Transport Secretary, who is also the Chairman of the KTDFC, has asked the KSRTC to settle the interest arrears due to the Kerala Transport Development Finance Corporation (KTDFC) in September and October from the government loan to the KSRTC. The riders are despite the intervention at the highest level after KSRTC CMD Tomin J. Thachankary petitioned the Chief Minister and the Transport Minister against the secretary’s directive to settle the interest arrears due to the KTDFC for releasing Rs. 20 crore from the government.

To keep the promise made to the employees that salary will be paid without fail, the KSRTC CMD had to take a bank loan to mobilise Rs. 94 crore needed to disburse salary hoping to repay it on getting funds from the government.

Although the Principal Secretary revised the order on Friday, Mr. Thachankary told
The Hindu
that the KSRTC had not received the funds. The management would have to wait till Monday to get Rs. 20 crore and settle the loan.

The new riders have widened the rift between the IAS officer and the KSRTC CMD, a senior IPS officer of ADGP grade. In the spat between the officials, the Transport Minister has supported the Transport Secretary stating that Mr. Jyothilal can take a call on managing the government funds.

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