All M-sand and River Sand Lorry Owners’ Federation has started an indefinite strike in Chennai and neighbouring districts from Thursday. About 20,000 sand lorries stayed off the road in eight districts as part of the protest seeking action against overloading of vehicles.
They staged a demonstration near Valluvar Kottam in support of their charter of demands. Members blamed the Transport Department for inaction against those who overload the vehicles and alleged corruption in the sector.
They demanded that the State government must streamline the m-sand trade and introduce the e-way bill system. A majority of the 4,000 manufacturing units were functioning without quality approval. The State government must open more river sand quarries for better availability of material.
S. Yuvaraj, president of the federation, said there was corruption behind the new notification issued to fix reflective stickers. Truck owners have to shell out ₹4,000 to ₹5,000 for stickers worth only ₹1,500. The State government must probe corruption charges in issuing vehicle fitness certificates.
“We have started the strike in eight districts that are severely affected. We have sought an appointment with Chief Minister this week to represent our issues,” he said.