TNI May 18, 2020
The impact of coronavirus and the nationwide lockdown have taken a toll to the road transport industries to a grim situation as per statement issued by AIMTC about 30 per cent vehicles seen on the roads, those engaged in transporting essential supplies and delivering loaded stock, are being run majorly by owner-drivers and small operators.
The All India Motor Transport Congress (AIMTC) is the apex body of transporters and represents about 95 lakh truckers and entities. Issued a press release after a internal meeting.
They have observed in the press release on Monday, that on the ground, the situation is getting worst with every passing day of lockdown and it is going to result in another major crisis.
AIMTC Cautioned the Government that the movement of goods and essential supplies will be hit, if the government do not announce immediate relief for transporters.
They further added “The movement of trucks, containers and other freight vehicles will not only affect the movement of goods from one state to another, but will also affect import-export. This will affect the supply of both essential and non-essential items.
AIMTC President Kultaran Singh Atwal said, “The central government has announced an economic relief package for various sectors in 5 phases to revive the slowing economy due to the coronavirus epidemic. However, the central government did not take care of this sector while announcing the relief package.”
Kultaran Singh Atwal further added 95 lakh transport operators have no money to pay to the staff, give loan instalments, vehicle insurance (motor insurance) and other fees.
“These vehicles are going to stop soon as they will not be able to pay hefty Third Party Premium, EMIs, Statutory Fees, Penalties etc. All of these have to be paid upfront without any bearing on, whether the vehicle will run, earn or not. The transport operators, big or small, cannot afford this as there is no earning,”
AIMTC said “truckers would not be able to pay their EMIs on June 1, 2020 and demanded that EMIs, State Taxes / Good Taxes / Passenger Tax / Motor Vehicle Tax must be extended for at least next 6 months, ideally for this financial year, If the government does not provide any package soon, the wheels of all vehicles carrying essential goods will stop automatically. The road transport community is collapsing and the government’s indifference to its legitimate demands has rippled a strong wave of discontentment and despair.”
AIMTC issued a cautionary statement while putting forward their relief demand before Govt. “We would like to put on record that if urgent relief measures are not taken, the day is not far away when the transport sector will not be able to function, which is the factual position on the ground and the unfolding conditions will then be beyond our control.”
While submitting a White Paper of revised relief package to the Govt, AIMTC said “If the government fails to take any action, lives of 20 crore people dependent on this sector will be shattered.”