Truckers call off strike after government assures to look into demands
The eight-day long nation-wide truckers strike called by the All India Motor Transport Congress (AIMTC) was called off on Friday after the government agreed to accept some of their demands, including the constitution of a high-level committee to look into the pending demands.
The decision to call off the strike, which began on July 20, was taken after discussions by the representatives of AIMTC with Union road transport minister Nitin Gadkari and finance minister Piyush Goyal.
Some of their pending demands include e-way bill implementation, GST related issues of the transport sector, simplifying the national permit rules for goods vehicles and increasing the validity of fitness certificates for vehicles.
Welcoming the AIMTC’s move, Gadkari tweeted that the government has constituted a high-level committee to look into the truckers demands. “We are sensitive to the transporters demand,” he tweeted.
The minister said that the transport sector plays a key role in the nation’s development and so the government has decided to make a special plan to provide health care facilities and insurance cover to drivers and their co-workers.
“We will look into the feasibility of extending the coverage of Pradhan Mantri Jeevan Jyoti Bima Yojana and Pradhan Mantri Suraksha Bima Yojana to the drivers and the co-workers of commercial vehicles,” Gadkari said.
A joint statement by the government and AIMTC was issued after the strike was called off. The statement said that on the request of the government, the Insurance Regulatory Development Authority of India has agreed to discuss the demand to review the premium for third-party insurance for heavy vehicles.
A ministry official said the government had agreed to put up a mechanism to ensure seamless movement of vehicles across toll plaza in the next six months.