Supply of milk and vegetables might be affected as truck and tempo drivers have decided to go on an indefinite strike from Thursday night.
Truck drivers’ associations in the city claim they were forced to resort to this measure as their demands are not being met by the government, which is leading to heavy losses.
Some of the demands include decreasing the toll collected from the transporters at toll plazas and reducing the sum that has to be compulsorily paid by the transporters under third party insurance.
A statement released by G R Shanmugappa, president of the All India Motor Transport Congress said, “All associations [have] decided to resort to an indefinite Chakka Jam (wheels on strike) in the state of Maharashtra, beginning 18th August midnight.”
“We do not want to hamper services carrying essential commodities but in the heat of the moment, anything could happen,” said a member of Bombay Goods and Trucks Association, on condition of anonymity.
A delegation comprising members from various truck associations will decide on the future course of action in a meeting with the ministry of road transport in Delhi, which is scheduled for Thursday morning.
Around 7,000 trucks and tempos enter and exit Mumbai every day to supply or ferry goods.
BEST union calls for voluntary strike, services may be hit today
BEST bus services on Thursday might be affected by a tiff between political-party led unions. One union is led by NCP leader Sharad Rao, while the other is led by Shiv Sena BEST Committee member Suhas Samant. The faction led by Rao is planning to lead a voluntary protest of drivers and conductors, to protest the non-implementation of demands for hike in wages and allowances. The union also alleges that the Sena led union is not doing enough for the welfare of workers. The union claims that’s services would be affected from 12am, but only if the protest sees enough participation. “It is not exactly a strike. But if drivers and conductors join our protest then they wouldn’t go to work on Thursday,” said Sharad Rao, general secretary, BEST Workers’ Union. The BEST administration hasn’t received any intimation about this protest. A union has to give a two weeks notice to the government or the administration if they plan to go on strike. Sources, however, said that this is nothing more than a show of strength between the two BEST unions. HTC