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Transporters to go on strike from midnight

January 04, 2009 18:03 IST

Following the failure of the third round of talks with the government, transporters on Sunday decided to go on an indefinite strike from midnight.

Supplies of essential commodities may get disrupted in the coming days.

Transporters demanded the lowering of diesel prices by Rs 10 per litre and the withdrawal of service tax on truckers.

Transporters also want a moratorium on all installments and waiver of interest on truck finance for at least six months.

"Although the All India Motor Transport Congress thanks the Secretary, Ministry of Road Transport & Highways, Brahm Dutt, for calling us for the third round of talks today, it is pitiable to note that nothing concrete came out from the talks and therefore, the proposed chakka jam from the midnight tonight is imminent," AIMTC said in a statement.

Their other demands include providing for a free movement of trucks in the country without any national or state permit and setting minimum freight in view of high input costs.

Haulers had earlier threatened to go on strike from December 20, 2008, on the same issues but they, however, deferred doing so till January 5 because of the special situation caused by the terrorist attacks in Mumbai [Images] in November.

Truck operators have accused the government of reneging on its promise of not imposing service tax and said truckers have received recovery notices of above Rs 600 crore.

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