Rajendra Prasad Mohapatra

Come 2023, the Odisha government will be implementing Old Vehicle Scrapping Policy to phase out of the 15-years-old vehicles from the roads. However, the upcoming policy seems to have triggered a lot of concerns among vehicle owners in the state. 

Several vehicle owners have expressed their disappointment over the amount of financial incentive announced by the state government. Raising their voice against the policy, Odisha Truck Owners' Federation has threatened a stir as well.

“My car is 18-years old. However, the vehicle is in very good condition and the engine is working fine. I use the vehicle occasionally to take my family members to nearby places. I am shattered to know that my beautiful vehicle will be scrapped once the policy is implemented,” said Balabha Sahu, a car owner staying in Badagada Brit Colony of Bhubaneswar.

“Government will provide only six percent incentives towards ex-showroom price for the scrapped vehicles. The incentive amount is meagre and it should be increased at least to 20-25 per cent,” he added.

Not only Balabha, but several other old car and other vehicle owners are also visibly upset over the scrapping policy decision of the government. Echoing the views of the vehicle owners, Odisha Truck Owners' Federation has threatened an indefinite stir starting from January 11, 2023.

As per the Federation, 20-year-old vehicles should be scrapped and not the ones which are 15-years old. They have also demanded a tax reduction of 15-25 percent on the purchase of new vehicles after the old vehicles are scrapped. The federation has further demanded that the amount of incentive should be increased from six per cent to 15 per cent.

“Our federation will go on an indefinite strike throughout the State if Odisha government does not consider the demands by December 31,” said Rabi Satpathy, owner of Odisha Truck Owners’ Federation.

If reports are anything to go by, as per the scrapping policy of the Odisha government, there are more than 18 lakh unfit vehicles in the State that are to be scrapped.

State Commerce and Transport Minister Tukuni Sahu said, “We urge all the people of the Odisha to cooperate in the implementation of the scrapping policy to make the roads accident-free and our environment pollution-free.”