Oil tankers went off the road from Monday in Andhra Pradesh, as truck owners resorted to strike as they were engaged in a dispute with the oil companies on payment of value-added tax of 5 per cent imposed by the State Government.
It is the contention of the truck owners that the companies should pay VAT of five per cent from Nov. 8, 2011, and the association is condemning the attitude of the oil companies. “It is unfortunate that the oil companies – IOC, BPCL, and HPCL – are refusing to pay the VAT going against the promise they gave to us in 2011. We cannot bear the burden and therefore nearly 1,000 oil tankers in the Visakhapatnam region and 2,000 in the entire State have gone off the road. We are left with no option,” said T. Naidu, President of Visakhapatnam Oil Tank Truck Owners' Association.
He said each truck owner may have to shell down not less than Rs 10 lakh or more as VAT and it would ruin them. He said oil companies were at present paying Rs 1.93 a km a kilo litre and it should at least be revised upwards to Rs 4. Otherwise, it would be impossible to operate the tankers.
“We want the ambiguity on VAT to end. Let the oil companies call for new tenders and let there be a clause specifically that the companies should pay the VAT to the State Government. The price should be fixed accordingly and there should be a minimum guarantee of 3,000 km a month,” he pleaded.