Mangaluru truck owners demand hike in freight rates
Truck owners, who have demanded increase in freight charge, said that they were forced to shell out nearly Rs 1,500 as bribe to government personnel for transporting a consignment from Mangaluru to Ballari.
Members of Karavali Karnataka Lorey (Lorry) Malakara Sangha told reporters here on Friday that the freight charge being offered by middlemen is very less and it has become a loss making business.
“We are offered only Rs 950 per ton to transport goods from Mangaluru to Ballari. Wheareas, those agents who book goods get more than Rs 1,300 per ton. Similarly, the freight charge offered by agents in other routes too are very less considering the increasing prices of diesel, spare parts and tyres. Due to financial crunch, some lorry owners are forced to accept overload to make the business profitable,” said member Varun Chowta.
Pointing out other problems owners of over 300 trucks face in the region, Varun said that the government has failed to control trucks from other states carrying out business in Karnataka.
“As per rules, all transportation within the state should be carried out by trucks registered in Karnataka. However, agents are violating rules by creating duplicate documents and allow trucks from other states operate in Karnataka,” Varun said.
Sangha secretary Sachin Kulai said middlemen do not increase the freight charge when the diesel price is increased. Whereas, they reduce the charge whenever there is decrease in diesel price.
“We have submitted memorandum to the government seeking solutions to all our problems. We will be forced to go on indefinite strike if the government does not pay heed to our demands,” he added.
Sangha members also demanded 24×7 loading and unloading facilities in major business centres like Bunder in Mangaluru city.