Will remain closed on December 24 for more dealer commission
: Petroleum dealers in the State will participate in protests planned next week, including a day’s closure on December 24, by the Confederation of Indian Petroleum Dealers demanding more commission.
Stating this, Tamilnadu Petroleum Dealers Association leaders on Wednesday said a ‘blackout’ had been planned at the petrol bunks on December 22 and 23. Barring what was necessary for transacting business, all other lights at the outlets, including those in driveway, yard and on the canopy would be switched off during the two days.
“Since we do not want our customers to suffer, there will be lights where necessary for them and from a point of safety,” the Association president A.R.Damodaran told presspersons after a meeting of its executive committee.
The trade is hopeful of the government announcing an increase in the commission ahead of the protests. However, if there is no response the dealers would go for a protest closure for 24 hours from the midnight of December 23.
COCO outlets to function
Company-owned, company-operated (COCO) retail outlets, however, would not be part of the strike. Though only a few in numbers, their functioning would reduce the impact on the consumers.
Switching off the lights, the Association vice-president K.Suresh Kumar said, was a different but strong way of conveying the sentiments of the dealers.
Delay in increasing their commission for the dealers, in the backdrop of frequent hike in the cost of petrol and diesel, necessitated more working capital. In addition, the dealers incur more expenditure on salaries, working capital interest cost, and electricity bill.
Mr.Damodaran said of the 4,500 dealers in the State about 3,500 would be part of the protests.
The remaining dealers were new and the Association was trying to convince them to join. Nationwide the Confederation commands the support of about 50 per cent of the about 45,000 dealers.
The dealers, he said, were upset about the delay in increasing the commission.
It was last revised in October 2012, more as an interim relief, and the dealers were assured that the Apurva Chandra Committee recommendations for more would be implemented shortly. The protests were to push the government to implement, he said.
The dealers are paid a commission of Rs.1.74 on sale of a litre of petrol and Rs.1.08 for diesel.