Tuesday, 03 August 2021 | PNS | Dehradun
Various unions of goods and public transport vehicles of Dehradun district staged a protest in the regional transport office against the State transport department on Monday. Unions like Dehradun Mahanagar City Bus Seva Mahasangh, Doon Autorickshaw Union, Bisht Gaon Tata Magic Association, Garhwal Truck Owners Association of Rishikesh and Tehri Garhwal Motors Owners Corporation (TGMOC) of Rishikesh participated in the protest against the department mainly for providing relaxation in taxes for one year due to Covid-19 pandemic. “We were asked to stay home during the lockdown and the Covid curfew and we complied with the orders. Why is the transport department demanding taxes for that period?” asked the head of Garhwal Truck Association, Dinesh Bahuguna. He said that his association has demanded the transport department to reinstate the old policy regarding the surrendering of commercial vehicles besides providing exemptions in taxes.
The president of TGMOC, Jitendra Singh Negi also stated that rather than giving relaxations, the department is making things more difficult for transport operators. “We have demanded to waive off the taxes for one year besides giving us relaxation in permit renewal for two years so that business can get back to normal for operators,” said Negi. However, the unions of city buses, autorickshaws and maxi cabs have mainly targeted the operation of electric buses in the city. These associations have asked the department to regulate the operation of electric buses across the city as they claimed it has severely affected their business. “While the private local transport operators are facing losses during the pandemic, the State Government is bearing the losses of the electric buses along with snatching employment of various people associated with the public transport. We, along with some other unions, want the government to fix the routes of e-buses either within the smart city area in Dehradun or outside the city,” said the head of the city bus union in Dehradun, Vijay Vardhan Dandriyal.
Meanwhile, the regional transport officer (administration) Dinesh Chandra Pathoi and RTO (enforcement) Sandeep Saini has assured the union members of approaching the State Government regarding their demands soon. The union members asserted if the department will not consider their demands in the next few weeks despite the assurances, all the unions will hold an indefinite strike against the State Government.