Agitating petroleum transporters suspend protest, supply of petroleum products to resume today in Kathmandu Valley

Published On: June 17, 2024 03:23 PM NPT By: Republica  | @RepublicaNepal

KATHMANDU, June 17: The agitating tanker drivers, who transport petroleum products, have suspended their protest. The protest was suspended after a decision was made to form a committee to study the demands of the agitating drivers in a discussion held with the Nepal Oil Corporation (NOC) at the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, and Supply on Monday.

Chandika Bhatt, Chief Executive Officer of NOC, said that the drivers will resume the transportation of petroleum products starting Monday. "With the resumption of deliveries, the market shortage will be resolved," said Bhatt.

An agreement has been reached between the two sides to resolve the demands of the agitating tanker drivers within two weeks. Petrol pumps in Kathmandu Valley have faced a shortage of diesel and petrol due to the protest by the Nepal Petroleum Tanker Drivers Association. The agitating drivers launched their protests alleging that the government was not ready to heed their seven-point demands.

Under normal circumstances, the NOC’s Thankot depot sells 700 kiloliters of petrol and 850 kiloliters of diesel daily in Kathmandu Valley. However, due to the protest by the Nepal Petroleum Tanker Drivers Association, only 130 kiloliters of petrol and 60 kiloliters of diesel were sold on Sunday. Ashok Shah, Head of the NOC Bagmati Regional Office, Thankot, said that the shortage is due to reduced loads of petrol and diesel.

Tanker drivers have been organizing phase-wise protest programs to exert pressure on the government to meet their demands. The drivers and co-drivers have put forward demands that workers should be appointed according to the labor law, wages should be arranged as per the Nepal government, the double bank guarantee and annual renewal applied only in the case of self-employment should be canceled, and the temperature should be properly managed, among other demands.

Similarly, they have demanded that social security funds be arranged, double cases of more than 50 liters be canceled, risk allowances be provided to drivers and co-drivers, and safety alert training be administered to drivers and co-drivers every three months. The drivers protested by tying black armbands on June 14 and waving black flags as a symbolic protest on June 15.


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