Members of 11 trade unions, including, CITU, INTUC and DMK's Labour Progressive Front, are participating in the strike, which caught the holiday commuters by surprise as it was advanced by a day.
About 60 percent of buses did not operate following the strike, causing immense hardship to travelers, police and trade union sources said.
In Chennai, suburban trains saw rush of passengers in view of the bus strike while autorickshaws and share autos were in demand.
The unions had earlier announced they would go on the strike from Monday.
Various political parties, including DMK, PMK and Congress urged the Government to convene conciliatory talks immediately with the striking unions and arrive at an amicable settlement.
CITU State General Secretary, A Sounderrajan said the unions would continue their strike till the Government concede to their demands, including wage revision.
The striking employees held dharnas at Tamil Nadu State Express Corporation office here and at various other places across the state shouting slogans demanding the authorities to take urgent steps to resolve their grievances.
Allaying concerns about the strike's impact tomorrow, being the first working day of the week, various District Collectors announced that bus services would be operated as usual.

"Severe action would be taken against those who try to disrupt operation of buses," Salem Collector K Maharabushanam said in an official release on Sunday night.
In Tirunelveli, two passengers were injured when unidentified miscreants pelted stones at as many buses, police said, adding they had been hospitalized. Out of the around 1,500 buses in Tuticorin and Tirunelveli districts, only around 700 were operated on Sunday, officials said.
District Collector M Karunakaran said buses would ply as usual from Monady. A report from Erode said only ten percent the buses were operated in the district.

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