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Kerala truckers to go on indefinite strike from April 9

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Kozhikode, Apr 6 (UNI) All commercial vehicles, including contract carriages, tanker and container lorries, will be off the road in Kerala from April 9 midnight following a strike call given by truck owners in protest against the government's ''faulty'' tax policy.

''We have no other alternative but to withdraw the vehicles from the roads'' as the labour ministry had failed to honour the promise given by Chief Minister Oommen Chandy to pay the welfare fund contribution in instalments, Kerala State Lorry Owners' Federation general secretary Francis Kuttikat told reporters here today.

In violation of Mr Chandy's instructions, the labour department in a recent notification had asked the operators to pay the welfare fund instalments in one go as a pre-condition for accepting vehicle tax, he said.

The Federation was compelled to take the extreme steps as the authorities were adamant to meet their pressing demands despite their effort to save the dwindling transport industry, he said.

The Federation had sought the support from their counterparts in the neighbouring states by not sending trucks to Kerala from their respective regions, he said.

UNI PCH DK1802

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