Northeast LPG cylinder carriers of IOC go on indefinite strike
GUWAHATI — LPG cylinder transporters of Indian Oil Corporation on Wednesday went on an indefinite strike for the second time in less than two months, alleging pending dues and low rates in recently floated tenders.
An IOC official, however, termed the strike as illegal.
The decision to go for the shutdown was taken after a meeting called by the Food, Public Distribution & Consumer Affairs Department of Assam between IOC and the North East Packed LPG Transporter Association (NEPLTA) failed to yield any solution to the prolonged stalemate.
“The government called us yesterday to talk about our demands. We reiterated our old issues, mostly related to pending dues and low rates in the tenders. However, the IOC was reluctant to talk about those,” NEPLTA chief adviser Kumud Nath told PTI.
The association had also written to the chief secretary on January 5, flagging the same issues and urged him to take necessary steps, he said.
“The government had called yesterday’s meeting, accordingly, to find out a solution. But, the IOC officials were adamant not to look into our problems and the discussions did not bring out any positive outcome,” Nath said.
From Wednesday morning, hundreds of trucks were seen lining up outside the bottling plants across Assam, but the vehicles did not enter the factories and load the cylinders, meant for distribution among the dealers.
When contacted, a senior IOC official said: “They have not given us any strike notice. So, it is an illegal action as per the law. Their claims on arrears and low rates are also misleading.”
The company has already released INR 2.75 crore of pending dues to different transporters of various plants, and there is no unsettled amount, he claimed.