Lakhs of trucks stay off road in Odisha as nationwide strike enters 4th day

Bhubaneswar/Cuttack: Traders across Odisha are now apprehensive of a possible shortage of essential commodities in view of the on-going nationwide truckers strike by All India Motor Transport Congress (AIMTC) which entered its fourth day today.

Traders at Chhatrabazar, the largest vegetable market in Cuttack informed that there has been a drop in the arrival of commodities.

“Earlier, 10 to 12 trucks used to arrive in the market on a daily basis. Yesterday, only one truck arrived and if the strike continues it would be difficult on our part to control the market,” said Joint Secretary of Chhatrabazar Traders Association, Dharmanand Patra.

Not only Cuttack, hundreds of trucks are now stranded at Berhampur terminal and Mayurbhanj due to picketing at several places across the State, informed sources.

It is pertinent to mention that several transport unions led by the AIMTC, launched the nationwide strike on July 20 over several demands including a cut in diesel prices and withdrawal highway toll fees.

Other demands also include resolving issues pertaining to e-Way bills, national uniform pricing, quarterly revision of fuel prices and a toll barrier-free India for seamless movement of vehicles.

Odisha Truck Owners’ Association General Secretary, Rabi Satpathy informed that a memorandum was submitted to the Centre three months back.

“Till now the Centre has not called for any discussions without which such stalemate will persist,” said Satpathy.