The All India Motor Transport Congress (AIMTC), the parent body representing the entire truck industry in the country, has sought the Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s intervention to abolish border check posts in some of the States.
The continuation of border check posts in various States is leading to corruption, extortion and exploitation of the transport sector. This is a matter of utmost importance concerning the prevailing corruption and exploitation at the Regional Transport Office (RTO) check posts.
The AIMTC in the letter listed States like Madhya Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Maharashtra, Jammu and Kashmir, Chhattisgarh, Karnataka, West Bengal, Kerala, Odisha, Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Telangana, Assam, Tamil Nadu, Nagaland, Pondicherry and Manipur where the border check posts continue to function.
The brazen and unchecked conduct of these check posts is severely impacting the transport trade and adversely affecting vulnerable and impoverished truckers, the letter said.
Delays & fuel wastage
Bal Malkit Singh, Chairman, Action Committee for Abolition of Check posts and Chairman of the Core Committee and former President of AIMTC, told businessline that the stoppage of trucks at the check posts reduces the running of the vehicles. “Despite trucks being highly sophisticated, they run only 280 km per day while it is nearly 800 km in developed countries ,” he said, blaming the hurdles at the check posts as one of the major reasons.
The AIMTC covers over 3,500 taluks, districts, State level federations and transport associations with over 20 crore people associated with this sector.
Border check posts are redundant and illegal post implementation of GST, National Logistics Policy and PM Gatishakti. There is heightened corruption, harassment, extortion and exploitation of poor and vulnerable truckers at these check posts.
As per the fundamental premise of the GST law, there should not be any RTO check posts at State borders or elsewhere on highways or within States. This measure is crucial to ensure a corruption-free, seamless movement of transport vehicles, reduce logistics costs, protect the environment, and avoid fuel wastage. However, regrettably, the notoriety of the RTO lobby has nullified the intended benefits of GST implementation, the letter said.
“There is availability of online data pertaining to document validity like insurance, permits, tax status, Pollution Under Control Certificates, and Eway Bills on the VAHAN Portal and mParivahan app of the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways. “We strongly advocate minimising en route checkings on roads/highways,” the letter said.
Abolishing border check posts, human interference on national/State highways and removal of hindrances/bottlenecks on roads will reduce the fuel wastage, waiting time and the delays caused by inspections and checks, and other expenses. It will help reduce logistics and improve the ease of doing business, the AIMTC said.
The Union Ministry of Road Transport, had in the past, issued advisories to all the States to abolish the check posts. However, no action has been taken by some of the States, said Singh. “We have sought PM’s intervention to take up the issue with various States,” he added.