In a move that will affect 35,000-40,000 truckers, the Haryana government has stopped issuing fitness certificates to oversized vehicles.
This comes a year after the transporters were given a deadline to adhere to the norms to resize their vehicles — trollies, carriers and trucks transporting two-wheelers and four-wheelers, which ended last week.
“We are prepared for it and have purchased new trucks that adhere to the new norms on size,” said Daman Dewan, general-secretary, Automobile Carrier Welfare Association (ACWA).
In mid-December 2014, the Haryana government had stopped renewing fitness certificates for trucks that did not adhere to the dimension norms.
The transporters had threatened to go on an indefinite strike seeking time to adhere to the norms. After the truckers met the Haryana chief minister on January 7, 2015, the government gave them a year’s exemption.
Dewan, however, said the truckers were finding it difficult to ply their vehicles due to lack of uniformity in the concerned law. “Our trucks are adhering to norms in Haryana, but are being challaned in Maharashtra for being oversized. Even the BJP-ruled states have different rules on the dimensions of the trucks, making it difficult for us to comply with the law,” said Dewan.
An all-India level meeting of the two-wheeler carriers association is scheduled for January 16, following which the truckers might decide to shift their business out of Haryana to Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh.
Contradicting the claims of truckers that different states had different laws, S P Singh, senior fellow, Indian Foundation of Transport Research and Training (IFTRT), wrote a letter to automobile manufacturers earlier this month urging them to not hire oversized vehicles.
“Normally, the vehicle manufacturers should be working towards road safety and environmental measures, but in an effort to manage their logistic needs are hiring oversized transport vehicles in contravention of Central Motor Vehicles Act, 1988. This is an alarming situation and certainly not tenable. Despite several reminders in the larger public interest, precious little initiative at the ground level has been taken by the global size auto majors in the country. Compromising on road safety should be a matter of zero tolerance for the auto industry and transporters,” read the letter.