Auto operators seek resolution to LPG refuelling issues

Autorickshaw operators staging a protest in Dharwad on Tuesday.

Autorickshaw operators staging a protest in Dharwad on Tuesday.  

They stage a protest in Dharwad, submit memorandum

Autorickshaw operators in Dharwad city have demanded resolution to long-pending issues related to LPG refuelling here and for setting up of more number LPG refuelling stations.

The operators staged a protest under the aegis of the Dharwad Autorickshaw Chalakara Abhivruddhi Sangha in front of the Deputy Commissioner’s office and submitted a memorandum here on Tuesday. Sangha president Jeevan Hutkuri, working president V.B. Sanjivappanavar and others led the protest.

The memorandum addressed to Deputy Commissioner M. Deepa stated that issues related to refuelling of autorickshaws running on LGP have remained unresolved for long and they have landed LPG autorickshaw operators in trouble.

The city has nearly 3,500 autorickshaws running on eco-friendly LPG fuel. However, refuelling has continued to be a major issue as no proper refuelling arrangements have been made for these autorickshaws till date.

While the number of LPG refuelling stations is not in proportion to the number of LPG autorickshaws running, the existing LPG refuelling stations are not functioning properly. For instance, the LPG refuelling station in Vidyagiri has stopped operating for the last one week. When questioned, the station owner gave evasive answers. He said that a pump has suffered a damage and spare parts need to be imported from Germany and it would not be possible to refuel autorickshaws till the pump is repaired.

Owing to this problem, autorickshaws dependent on fuel at this station have to go to another refuelling station located 18 km away at Rayapur and this is causing monitory losses to the autorickshaw operators, they said.

The memorandum has further pointed out that the LPG refuelling problem has remained unresolved for long. Although autorickshaws running on LPG were introduced here long ago and several autorickshaw operators have switched to LPG from conventional fuel, problems related to refuelling have not been sorted out.

The sangha has been urging the authorities concerned to decide on this issue for long. Way back in 2009, autorickshaw operators brought this issue to the notice of the then Deputy Commissioner Darpan Jain. Appeals made to the successive Deputy Commissioners in the last 10 years have yielded no results and no serious efforts have been made yet to resolve this problem for obscure reasons.

It is unfortunate that no one has taken this matter seriously and made sincere efforts to sort it out. Even the officials concerned appear least bothered about addressing this issue, they added.

The autorickshaw operators have demanded that two or three additional LPG refuelling stations be set up in Dharwad. They also sought compensation to autorickshaws that have been scrapped.

This apart, autorickshaw stands that have been vacated for facilitating the BRTS project should be reinstalled and roads that are in bad shape due to the recent heavy rain and floods should be made motorable on priority basis, they said and cautioned that the sangha would be compelled to intensify the protest if these issues are not addressed.

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Printable version | Apr 9, 2020 12:20:24 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/auto-operators-seek-resolution-to-lpg-refuelling-issues/article29694566.ece

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