LPG transporters call off stir

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Chennai, Mar 8: In a huge relief to thousands of LPG customers in the Southern region, Tanker lorry owners have called-off their indefinite strike following talks with oil marketing companies convened by the state government.

The strike was called off at 0145 hrs on Thursday after a 10-hour meeting on Wednesday, government sources said. LPG supplies were crippled after Southern region LPG Tanker Lorry Owners Association went on an indefinite stir since midnight of Feb29, pressing various demands including floating new transport rates and inducting about 500 truckers.

With talks on March 3 remaining inconclusive, another round of talks between the oil marketing companies and Association members were held on March 7 in the presence of Civil Supplies and Consumer Protection Commissioner P M Basheer Ahamed.

"The meeting went on for over 10 hours on Wednesday and concluded around 1.45am. They (Association) have decided to withdraw the stir. We have asked them to reach a settlement among themselves (between oil marketing firms and association) in the next 30 days", a senior government official told PTI.

Since, the strike has been called off, the association has decided to operate the trucks immediately, he said. "The oil marketing companies have offered Rs 2.50 per ton per km. The Association has been demanding more. Now, given the crisis situation which is largely affecting the consumers, they have been asked to withdraw the strike... We have asked them to iron out the issues among themselves..." he said.

Southern Region LPG Tanker Lorry Owners Association President M Ponnambalam said the trucks were already operating across the States besides Goa and Puducherry.

"They have asked us to settle the issue in the next 30 days..", he said. According to Association sources, there would be another round of talks at the oil marketing companies' headquarters. The final tender rates is expected to be finalised in the meeting, they added.

PTI

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