Assam chakka bandh to continue as govt-association talks fail

Assam chakka bandh to continue as govt-association talks fail

GUWAHATI

The All Assam Motor Transport Association (AAMTA) has decided to extend the indefinite chakka bandh after talks with the state transport department here on Tuesday evening failed to break the impasse.

AAMTA, the apex organisation of public transport vehicle operators in Assam, since Monday have been staging the strike over non-fulfilment of demands such as road tax waiver and fare hike amid the pandemic.

“The transport minister could not give us a written commitment to fulfill our immediate demand to allow plying of our vehicles with 100 per cent seat capacity instead of 50 per cent. We had also proposed that we will not charge more from passengers,” AAMTA secretary-general, Pradip Das said after the meeting.

Das said that the minister had verbally agreed to our proposal but said he would have to consult the health department to give us a written commitment.

Das also said that when flights and trains can carry passengers to full capacity amid COVID protocols there was no reason why the motor transport association should not be given that privilege.

Among the other demands that the association put forth in the meeting are an extension of insurance payment for six months in the wake of the pandemic and the release of Rs 20 crore for use of vehicles of the association by the government during the COVID period.

Meanwhile, commuters, particularly office-goers, had a harrowing time on the second day of the indefinite chakka bandh as well with all kinds of public transport vehicles, including buses, trekkers, tempos and auto-rickshaws staying off the road on Tuesday.

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