Tourist car operators miffed at AP 'double permit system'

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Chennai, Sep 27 (UNI) The Chennai Tourist Car Operators' Association has decided to stage a demonstration before the Transport Commissioner's office here on October 23 to protest the implementation of ''double permit'' system when they entered Andhra Pradesh.

A decision to this effect was taken at the general body meeting chaired by Association President S Chidambaram in the presence of Association Founder T Anbalagan here last evening.

Briefing newspersons, Mr Chidambaram said tourist car operators, taking tourists and pilgrims to Tirupati and other parts of Andhra Pradesh faced problems in view of the ''double permit system.'' He said after the Tamil Nadu Government issued a permit to tourist car operators to visit any part of Andhra Pradesh, the authorities there refused to recognise the permit and insisted the operators obtain another permit from them.

The Andhra Pradesh authorities imposed them fines which ranged from Rs 2500 to Rs 14,000 if they failed to get Andhra Pradesh permit.

Besides the permit, the Andhra Pradesh Government also collected a hefty Rs 2,680 as Entry Tax for seven and ten-seater cars, he claimed.

When they took up the matter with Tamil Nadu Transport Commissioner C P Singh, he pleaded helplessness, saying the state government had nothing to do with it and the operators should take up the issue with the Andhra Pradesh Government, Mr Chidambaram said.

Transport Minister K N Nehru promised to reddress their grievance after taking up the matter with his Andhra Pradesh counterpart but there had been no solution in sight for the past one year, he said.

He said when Andhra Pradesh Government heavily taxed vehicles from Tamil Nadu, the entry was free for vehicles from the other state.

The Andhra Pradesh Transport officials also levied a fine of Rs 600 if the tourist vehicles failed to install speed control device.

Only vehicles from Tamil Nadu were targeted for this, he alleged.

As suggested by Mr Singh, the association proposed to move the Andhra Pradesh High Court seeking to declare the double permit system null and void, he said.

UNI

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