BENGALURU: While a section of truckers under the Federation of Karnataka State Lorry Owners’ Association (FKLOA) has called for an indefinite strike from Wednesday midnight against the new penal law under the Bharatiya Nyay Sanhita, that provides punishment for truck drivers involved in hit-and-run accidents, others said the strike is unnecessary.
B Channa Reddy, honorary president of FKLOA, said, “Our industry is already facing a shortage of drivers and cleaners. While the number of trucks on the road has gone up, the number of drivers available is dwindling. In this situation, the Union government has come up with stringent penalties for hit-and-run cases, where a driver could face 10-year imprisonment with a fine of up to Rs 7 lakh.”
Our main demand is to withdraw such provisions, Reddy said, adding that they have sent letters to the state and Union governments.
“There are over 9 lakh trucks in the state, of which, 2 lakh operate within the state. We have given a call to all truckers. Supply of essential goods, including milk and petrol, will not be affected. The strike will pick up from the second day (Friday). We will take it back only after a written assurance from the Union government,” Reddy said.
GR Shanmugappa, president of the Federation of Karnataka State Lorry Owners and Agents Association, said that when Union Home secretary Ajay Bhalla said the government would keep penal provisions in abeyance, and the strike was not necessary at all.