Transport owners warn of strike against hefty fines

LAHORE: The transport owners on Monday warned the government of going on a strike for an indefinite period from Jan 2, disrupting traffic and goops supplies across the country, if their demands are not accepted. They are protesting against increase in fines by the National Highways & Motorways Police (NHMP), Lahore Ring Road Authority, amounting up to Rs10,000. "We are here to tell you clearly to accept our demands that are genuine.

However, if you fail to do so, we, then, will have no option but to start observing countrywide strike from Jan 2, 2020," said Asmatullah Niazi, Public & Goods Transport Alliance's chairman while speaking at a press conference here. For the last many days, the transport owners have been protesting against massive increase in rates of fines on various violations at all toll plazas on highways and motorways. The increase ranges from Rs500 to Rs10,000 on various violations.

Besides this, the fines' rates were also doubled or more, making routine business of the transport owners unfeasible.

"We have been suffering from the highhandedness of Customs Department also whose teams continue disturbing us by stopping our vehicles on roads, checking goods, wasting time and energy and imposing heavy fines besides registering cases against us," Niazi, who was accompanied by the truckers association chief Yasir Naseer and others, deplored.

Published in Dawn, December 31st, 2019

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