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Kerala - Kozhikode Printer Friendly Page   Send this Article to a Friend

Traders criticise norms put forward by truck owners

By Our Staff Reporter

KOZHIKODE, SEPT.16. The Malabar Produce Merchants' Association fears that a crisis might be created in the trading sector in Kozhikode district owing to the new stipulations put forward by the truck owners' association regarding transport of goods and introduction of `turn system'.

Rise in prices

The result could be a rise in prices of essential commodities and torpedoing of the long-existing practice in goods transport here, they maintained.

At a press conference here today, the chairman of the action committee, K. Hassan Koya, and others said that the new restrictions placed on merchants in Kozhikode only, by truck owners, employees and commission agents amounted to a kind of monopoly in the field of goods transport.

New restrictions

According to the new restrictions, the traders could hire a truck for transporting goods only through the owners' association, and at rates, timings and weights dictated by it.

Moreover, all trucks that brought goods from Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh or elsewhere had to comply with the turn system and wait in queues for a couple of days if they were to transport items from here such as coconut, copra, tiles, timber or plastics.

Moreover, under the new rules, consignments would not be accepted after 6 p.m. This could be detrimental to the trade in perishable items such as vegetables and fruits, he added.

As a result of the new stipulations, many of the trucks owners from outside the State preferred not to fall in line with the new rule. A few who have agreed to the new rules, have hiked their charges. Earlier, these trucks had carried goods at concessional rates, they pointed out.

Meeting

Although a meeting with the District Collector and ADM had asked for status quo to be maintained, the lorry owners' association had now gone ahead with the new directives, he said.

The merchants maintained that this amounted to an infringement of their fundamental right to freely transport goods. The traders appealed to the authorities to intervene and bring about a rapprochement to end the impasse.

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