‘Like two sons of a father’: transport unions support Bharat Bandh’s call
Transport unions on Sunday expressed solidarity with protesting farmers and said they would observe the call for national strikes on December 8. The Delhi Freight Transport Association and the Indian Tourist Transport Association expressed solidarity with the ongoing protests.
“Agriculture and transportation are like two sons of one father,” the president of the Indian Tourist Transport Association, Satish Sehrawat, was quoted as saying by the ANI news agency. He further added that 51 transport unions have decided to support farmers in their so-called Bharat Bandh.
The president of the Delhi Freight Transport Association, Parmeet Singh Goldie, said that farmers form the roots of their business, so they feel they must express solidarity with the troubled farmers unions. Goldie said: “We are supporting our fellow farmers. They are the roots of our business ”.
On 2 December, the main transport body All India Motor Transport Congress (AIMTC) had threatened to halt operations in North India in support of agitating farmers’ unions. AIMTC represents 95 lakh truckers and other entities across the country.
AIMTC President Kultaran Singh Atwal told PTI that the main body of hauliers had supported the restless farmers from the beginning. He further added, “AIMTC has already extended its support to the farmer agitation from day one. We have decided to stop our operations strategically starting from North India and if the government does not address the farmers’ issue then we may decide to shut down transportation operations across the country in their support. “
Bal Malkit Singh, chairman of the AIMTC central committee, had noted that they will mainly halt supply truck movements in northern India from December 8 and said it will intensify to a nationwide halt of supply movement. if the government chooses not to address the issues.
“Starting on December 8, we will stop the movement of supplies throughout North India, including Delhi, Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh and Rajasthan. Then we will scale it to the whole country if the government does not address its problems, ”Singh said.
The bodies of various transporters believe that the protests are legitimate and have extended their support for them as 65% of their trucks transport agricultural products.
The Center and the protesting farmers’ unions have not yet reached an agreement on the three laws: Price Assurance Agreement and Agricultural Services for Farmers (Empowerment and Protection); the Draft Law on Trade in Agricultural Products and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation); and the Essential Commodities Bill (Amendment). Despite government guarantees, farmers’ unions have said they will go ahead with Bharat Bandh on December 8.
The Center and the farmers union will hold the sixth round of discussion on the laws on December 9.