State transporters to strike over escort fee charged at check posts

Jul 09, 2014, 08:16 IST | A Correspondent

Maharashtra Rajya Truck Tempo Tanker Bus Vahatuk Mahasangh will stage a statewide strike on July 15 midnight with nearly 80 lakh vehicles participating in the protest

After storing water to make up for the water shortage, Punekars will now have to stock foodgrains as well. The Maharashtra Rajya Truck Tempo Tanker Bus Vahatuk Mahasangh (MRTTTBVM) has threatened to go on a state-wide strike from July 15 mid-night.

Feeling ripped off? Transporters say that since the LBT tax was imposed last year, it was the government’s duty to abolish the escort fee collections at the octroi nakas. File pic for representation

As many as 80 lakh vehicles across the state will participate in the strike, out of which, around 10 lakh vehicles will be from Pune. This means that the supply of foodgrains will be affected.

Members of the MRTTTBVM complained that after imposing the Local Body Tax (LBT), it was the responsibility of the government to stop escort fee collections at the octroi check posts. Despite their repeated requests, the state government has failed to address their plight. In retaliation, they have to go on indefinite strike, unless the state government steps in to resolve the issue.

Rajendra Rajput, member of the organisation, said, “At every octroi check post, the trucks, tempo and tankers have to pay between Rs200 to Rs250 which is a big amount. “After several attempts, we have realised that the state government is not at all serious in taking up the issue.”

Rajput added, “Since the LBT was introduced last year, the members of the organisation have been doing follow-ups on the issue, but nothing substantial has emerged. If the truck passes from Shindewadi to Dehu Road, they have to pay R400 as escort fee.” Rajput further added, “We have even met Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan to discuss the issue, but nothing has happened yet and we are still burdened by the charges at the octroi check posts, which is legal, and therefore we are left with no other option but to go on strike.”

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