Kashmir Portal

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Valley transporters threaten 'Chaka Jam'

Posted by Kashmir Portal on June 16, 2009

kashmir-global-network : Message: [kashnet] Valley transporters threaten ‘Chaka Jam’

Valley transporters threaten ‘Chaka Jam’
*Hike in motor taxes flayed
KT NEWS SERVICE
SRINAGAR, Feb 1: In a major setback to the government, the valley based
transporters have decided to go on strike from February 15 against the
recent hike in several motor and allied taxes.

According to Ghulam Mohommad Bhat, General Secretary, Kashmir
Passengers Transporters Welfare Association, it was unanimously resolved
to go on Chaka Jam from February 15, as the trifold increase in various
taxes were unacceptable for them.

Details said the union surface transport ministry has recently issued a
circular vide number TC/JK/MV/991475 dated 29-12-99, increasing various
motor and allied taxes. The order came into force immediately.

According to the circular, fitness fee has been increased to Rs 500 from Rs
150. Registration fee of motors has been increased by Rs 550. Driving
license fee has been increased to Rs 150 from Rs 15. Ownership (duplicate)
fee has been increased to Rs 1800 from Rs 150. Transfer fee has been hiked
by Rs 300. Letter of authority fee has been hiked by Rs 2000 and application
fee has been increased to Rs 100 from Rs 10.

“Transporters have already sustained loss of Rs 450 crore in the last ten
years of turmoil. Putting additional burden on them will further create
problems. We are unable to pay the additional levies which are arbitrary, as
transporters have not been consulted”, said Bhat.

He said the hike was against the spirit of motor vehicle act. It was
mandatory for the government to consult the transporters before increasing
any taxes, said Bhat.

“In February 1999, a meeting was held in Jammu, which was presided over
by the then finance minister Mohammed Shafi, which resolved that for five
years, the government will not impose fresh taxes on transporters. They have
thrown their own set norms to winds and now transporters have no other
alternative but to go on strike”, said Bhat, adding, on Sunday another
meeting of Kashmir Passenger Transporters Welfare Association and its
partners has been convened to chalk out the future program.

Meanwhile, Mini Bus Operators Association has severely criticised the
government’s decision to hike the sales tax of motor spirit. According to
Association spokesman, the hike in Petrol by Rs two has plunged the whole
industry into crisis.

“The government is trying to fill its coffers at our cost. They are levying
all
kinds of taxes caring little for the difficulties faced by the transporters.
The
previous hike in fare is inadequate. And if the government does not revoke
the recent order then the transporters have no other alternative but to take
an
agitation course”, said the Association spokesman.

Bhat also voiced similar concern and said the government was
contemplating to increase the sales tax on diesel by six per cent which will
add another nail to the coffin of ailing transport industry.

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