General Secretary of South Zone Motor Transporters Welfare Association GR Shanmughappa said that before launching the indefinite strike, the lorry owners have decided to go on a token strike on February 26.
“A final decision on the indefinite strike will be taken at the lorry owners conference in Bengaluru on March 5. More than 26 lakh trucks from the Southern states will stay off the roads. The government should call us for talks before to find a solution to the issue,” he said.
Already 1.5 lakh lorries, out of over 4.5 lakh lorries in Tamil Nadu were not operated due to lack of orders. The lorry owners also sought to remove tolls operating beyond the contract period as all these factors may lead to an increase in price of essential commodities.
The Tamil Nadu Lorry Owners Federation has already proposed an increase in freight charges by 30 per cent from March 3.
Meanwhile in Tiruchy, CPM cadre staged a protest against the petrol price hike on Friday and demanded to regularise it. Members, who assembled near a petrol pump, garlanded a vehicle and performed ‘last rites’ to the vehicle as the price hike had made people to desist from using the vehicles.