Sand lorry operators withdraw strike call

Here is a mix of good and bad news after the the striking sand operators meeting with the district administration.

The good is sand lorry operators consent to withdraw the strike call, thus ending the week-long tussle with the district adminsitration. The bad is  hike in per load rate of sand by Rs 350 taking it to Rs 7,850 coming into effect from January 1.  Following an assurance from the minister for medical education and district in-charge S A Ramdas, Mysore City Local Lorry Owners Association agreed to call off the strike.

Presiding over the meeting of District Sand Supervising Committee at the office of deputy commissioner on Thursday. the minister assured to look into the demands of the transport operators. Some of the demands also got solutions on the spot with a meeting of both officers of related departments and also the transport operators. The sand supply is expected to resume on Friday.

Addressing the meeting, president of Mysore City Local Lorry Owners Association B Revanna demanded for the permit to transport the sand throughout the week, barring Sunday. In reply the minister said a total of 1,400 sand transporting lorries have registered with the RTO. It wouldn’t be a problem to issue permit for daily transportation of sand as all the vehicles will not hit the roads in tandem.

The minister also revised the per load rate of sand from the existing Rs 7,500 to Rs 7, 850 owing to hike in diesel prices. However, the new rate will come into effect from January 1.  The transport operators had argued that the diesel rates have been revised twice after Sand Policy came into effect in the district.

Additional five yards will be opened along with the existing one sand reserve in the district. The minister also warned of cancelling the permit of those lorries defying the policy and transporting sand to outside districts. Before cancelling the licence, fines will be imposed on the lorries on two occasions.

For another important demand of extending the period of distribution and time of the permit, the minister said online system will be introduced from January 1. He also set January 15 as deadline for the lorries to be equipped with GPS to keep tap on erring operators.

ZP CEO and acting deputy commissioner Dr M N Ajay Nagabushan, additional deputy commissioner Naga Nayak, police commissioner K L Sudheer,  RTO Arun Kumar Singh, senior geologist Y B Anand, SP R Dileep and others were present.

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