Tribune News Service
Shimla, December 23
The threat of private bus operators to not provide buses for state government’s Mandi celebration on December 27, which will be attended by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, appears to have worked.
In a meeting with Secretary Transport here today, the private bus operators have been assured that their demands will be accepted and Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur will make the announcement tomorrow in Mandi.
“We have been given to understand that our demand for 100 per cent exemption of special road tax and token tax till November 2021 will be accepted. We have been given time to meet the
Chief Minister tomorrow in Mandi. Hopefully, the announcement in this regard will come tomorrow,” said Ramesh Kamal, secretary of the private bus operators’ union.
Kamal further said that they are pressing for 50 per cent exemption in tax till from December 2021 to March 2022 as well.
The bus operators had put the government in a fix with their announcement to not provide their buses for the function being held to celebrate government’s four years in office. Without the availability of private buses, it would be difficult to ferry people for the celebrations. “If our major demands are met, we have promised to provide at least 1,000 buses for the function,” said Kamal.
The private bus operators, who have a fleet of around 3,500 buses in the state, had been demanding tax exemption and other assistance for long without success. This time, however, they seem quite confident of success, especially with the state government looking to bring over 50,000 people for the function from different parts of the state.
Taking a leaf out of private bus operators’ book, the taxi operators, too, have refused to provide their service for the Mandi function.
They, too, have been demanding tax exemption and extension in permit by two years. “We will not provide our services during the function. Also, we will wear black badges during the celebrations,” said a taxi operators’ union here today.
Had put govt in a fix
- The bus operators had announced that they would not provide their buses for the function being held to celebrate the government’s four years in office
- “If our major demands are met, we have promised to provide at least 1,000 buses for the function,” said the union secretary
- The private bus operators, who have a fleet of around 3,500 buses in the state, have been demanding tax exemption and other assistance for long without success