Truckers called off stir following Centre’s assurances of law after talk

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Image Source: FPJ

Delhi, Jan 03: The nationwide truckers’ protest has been called off following government assurances to consult stakeholders before implementing a controversial law related to hit-and-run incidents. After extensive discussions with the government, the All-India Motor Transport Congress decided to end the agitation.

Union Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla stated, “We had a discussion with All India Motor Transport Congress representatives… the government wants to clarify that the new rule has not been implemented yet. We emphasize that before implementing Bharatiya Nyaya Sanhita 106/2, we will consult with All India Motor Transport Congress representatives and then make a decision.”

Bal Malkit, the chairman of the AIMTC’s core committee, confirmed, “The new laws have not been implemented. It will be implemented only after consultation with All India Transport Congress.”

On Tuesday, the Ministry of Home Affairs assured representatives of the truckers’ association that decisions regarding penalties in hit-and-run cases under the new Bharatiya Nyay Sanhita (BNS) would only be made after discussions with AIMTC representatives. The Home Ministry conveyed during the meeting that the new laws have not been enforced, and any concerns raised by the truckers would be considered openly by the government.

Union Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla, on behalf of the Centre, emphasized, “We all want to say that before implementing Bharatiya Nyaya Sanhita 106/2, we will have a discussion with All India Motor Transport Congress representatives, and then only we will take a decision.” Consequently, protesters were urged to resume work from the following day, with AIMTC Chairman Malkit Singh Bal assuring, “We met and discussed the provisions under the Bharatiya Nyaya Sanhita, and all issues have been resolved…The law has not been put into force yet, and I assure you that we will not let this law come into force.”

Expressing concerns about the law, truck drivers highlighted that many drivers, often daily wage laborers, tend to flee minor accidents to avoid mob justice and safeguard their lives. They argued that imposing stringent penalties on drivers while mobs go unpunished is unjust. Additionally, truckers emphasized their inability to afford a Rs. 10 lakh fine and five years of detention, considering their precarious economic situation. The three-day strike led to disruptions at petrol pumps across various parts of India.



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