Petroleum dealers’ association calls for nation-wide stir
By Express News Service | Published: 15th October 2012 10:08 AM |
A nation-wide protest has been called by the Confederation of Indian Petroleum Dealers against the delay in increasing the commissions. As part of the protest, 1,875 petrol bunks in the state falling under the organisation will function only from 9 am to 7 pm on Monday.
“In the last two years, the Petroleum Ministry and the three oil companies have shrugged an increase in the commissions to the dealers even as the price of petrol has increased from `30 to `70 per litre and the diesel prices have shot up from `30 to `47.
During the same period the state government increased the minimum wages by about 70 per cent, the electricity charges by about 100 per cent and the interest rates of banks have also gone up. As such, our operational costs have shot up, but there has been no consequent increase in the commission in spite of repeated requests,” said M Radhakrishnan, general secretary of All-Kerala Federation of Petroleum Traders.
More than a way of protest, the reduction in the number of working hours is a way of reducing the operational costs, the union members said. If the Petroleum Ministry fails to increase the wages, the bunks under the organisation will operate only from 7 am to 7 pm in the subsequent days, the union leaders said.
But other petroleum dealers’ organisation like the Kerala State Petroleum Traders Association have abstained from the strike.
“At a meeting chaired by the Minister for Petroleum and Natural Gas in Delhi last week, we were assured that the commission would be increased. We have demanded an increase in the commission for petrol from the current `1.49 to `2.13 per litre and for diesel from the current `0.91 to `1.31 per litre. But since the agreement has been
made, it will be inappropriate to go for a strike now,” said Niyas, state committee member of Kerala State Petroleum Traders Association.
But the members of the confederation said that the Petroleum Ministry and the oil companies were dragging the issue for over a year and hence the only option is to go in for a protest.