Transporters body urges govt to rescue stranded drivers

New Delhi, Mar 28 () Amid reports of thousands of drivers carrying non-essential goods stuck at different parts during the lockdown, All India Motor Transport Congress (AIMTC) has made a distress call to the government to ensure that its drivers reach home.

AIMTC is the apex body of transporters representing about 93 lakh truckers across the nation.

"We have been receiving consistent distress calls from the drivers who are stranded and stuck on the highways, away from their homes without food, water and money. Thousands of drivers are living in pathetic conditions on the roads, with no basic amenities or food at any dhabas and this is a major problem," AIMTC said in a statement.

AIMTC President Kultaran Singh Atwal said: "We have written to the Government to allow them to return home. There is a grave humanitarian crisis in the making unless prudent steps are taken to allow the stranded trucks to reach their destination."Advertisement

The body said "callous" approach is going to snap the supply chain of essential commodities as the vehicles carrying essential goods have also got stuck up while returning empty or with non-essential return load.

With no relief coming on the ground for the helpless drivers AIMTC has taken initiatives on pan India basis to coordinate help and provide them food wherever possible, but there are many pockets which are not reachable due to lockdown and the situation is fast getting out of control, the organisation said.

"We have approached, represented and spoken time and again to the Government to allow good vehicles in transit to reach their destination after the screening of drivers and sanitization of vehicles.

"We expect immediate circular from the Government to allow trucks, either empty or with non-essential goods to reach their destination/home state without any hassles. as the drivers are getting restless and may abandon the vehicles on the highways," the body said.

Meanwhile, express logistics service providers said it will take time to regularise the cargo services.Indian Foundation of Transport Research and Training ( IFTRT ) on the other hand has demanded issuance of order by the Home Ministry for off-loading of trucks by factories and warehouse owners as hapless good carriers are stranded.Advertisement

The 21-day lockdown has been imposed in the country from Tuesday amid coronavirus outbreak. NAM NAM MRMR

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