At least 20 scheduled train services were cancelled this morning due to the strike launched by the Sri Lanka Railways Locomotive Operating Engineers’ Union, according to Sri Lanka Railways.
The Locomotive Operating Engineers’ Union had launched the strike from midnight yesterday over several key demands, including amendments to the recruitment process and promotions, which they say have been delayed for nearly five years despite their constant requests in this regard.
The union’s secretary, S.R.C.M. Senanayake said the promotions and recruitment process of locomotive operating engineers have been stalled due to the absence of a proper salary scale.
Despite informing the President, the Prime Minister, the Transport Minister and the Railway General Manager about the matter, Senanayake said the locomotive operating engineers are yet to receive a proper solution.
He vowed to carry on the trade union action by incorporating all locomotive operating engineers, if the authorities fail to meet their demands.
However, the members of the public were gravely affected by the railway strike this morning.
As multiple trains were cancelled, the trains that were in operation were crammed with passengers. Many commuters were seen train surfing due to overcrowding.
Meanwhile, the express trains, including Kurunegala-Colombo Fort and Puttalam-Mount Lavinia trains, have made stops at additional railway stations along the way.
Some of the trains that were cancelled are as follows:
• Slow train from Rambukkana to Colombo
• Chilaw-bound train departing Aluthgama at 4:30am
• Colombo Fort-bound train from Chilaw
• Negombo-bound train departing Colombo Fort at 6:50am
• Maradana-bound train departing Panadura at 7:40am
• Maradana-bound trains departing Moratuwa at 7:45am and 8:10am
• Maradana-bound train departing Kalutara South at 7:25am
• Colombo Fort-bound trains departing Padukka at 5:20am and 7:10am
• Colombo Fort-bound train departing Kosgama at 6:05am