The nationwide truckers strike which lasted for around eight days following demands for reduction in central and state taxes by getting diesel under the Goods and Services Tax (GST) regime, resolving issues of toll collection system and reduction in third-party insurance premium among others. In a joint press communication the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways and the All India Motor Transport Congress (AIMTC), have informed the nationwide strike has been called off, following talks between the government and the transport body.
As per the communication both the parties have agreed on the following points –
Third party insurance for heavy transport vehicles – The government has requested the Insurance Regulatory Department Authority of India (IRDAI) to review third party insurance for heavy vehicles. A meeting between the transport union and the insurance regulator is scheduled to take place today.
Ease of toll collection – The government has agreed to put in place a mechanism to ensure seamless movement for the transport vehicles across the toll plaza’s in the country by using technology and reducing manual interferences.
Plans to extend the government backed life insurance and accident insurance scheme to the trucking community.
The government will also look at feasibility of extending employees state insurance scheme to the transporters.
The central government will also consider demands of the transport sector in terms of increasing validity of fitness certificate to two years; simplification of national permit for goods vehicles including removal of double-driver requirement, installation of Fastags; regularsiation of higher axle loads for existing vehicles; strict enforcement against overloading on road and uniform height for transport vehicles.
The government would also constitute a high-level committee under chairmanship of secretary, Ministry of Road Transport and Highways for facilitating expeditious resolution in terms of demands from the trucking community. The committee will look into the demands in regards to – e-way Bill implementation, GST related issues, rationalise/abolish TDS rates, rationalise rates of presumptive tax on transport vehicles, Direct Port Delivery (DPD) at ports and any other issues that may arise in the first meeting of the committee.
The parties have announced the joint committee will have senior level representatives from Ministry of Shipping, Central Board of Direct Taxes, Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs and six representatives from AIMTC. The committee will submit its recommendations within three months to the government.