Speaking to ANI Bal Malkit Singh on Saturday said, “The shops are closed except those dealing with essential items, restrictions by the state government have started affecting the transport sector. The sector is facing a loss of 315 crores rupees per day due to the restrictions across the country.”
Elaborating on the current situation of the transport sector, Malkit Singh said, “The demand for trucks have curtail which as per our assessment is down by 50 per cent across the country, as far as the transport facilities are concerned the medical goods like personal protective equipment (PPE) kits, medicines, oxygen cylinders are transported these days including food items and grains so the rest items are fully ceased in few states including Maharashtra.”
The state of Maharashtra is one of the leading automotive manufacturing hubs and home to the financial capital of the country.
Flagging the concern of drivers and economic well-being, he said, “The COVID-19 restrictions are crippling the poor truckers as they are already in the financial crises. They have to arrange for taxes, insurance, salaries for workers and drivers, establishment and administrative costs, and equated monthly installments (EMIs).”
He demanded that the toll and road taxes should be exempted for some time as the government did last year. The government should plan relief measures for truck drivers like waiver of state taxes, permit and fitness fees, free parking for idle trucks and buses, he said.
Drivers and workers in transportation space should be vaccinated for COVID-19 on priority, he demanded.