Petrol pumps declare nationwide strike to press GST

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Through this strike, around 1,000 pumps will be directly impacted.

UPF represents over 54,000 dealers from the Federation of All-India Petroleum Traders, the All-India Petroleum Dealers Association and the Consortium of Indian Petroleum Dealers.

The United Petroleum Front (UPF) has announced a 24-hour closure of outlets by petroleum dealers nationwide from October 12 midnight to press the government on their demands, including rectification of trade anomalies. Balwinder Singh Canth, director of marketing, International Olympic Committee told FPJ, "There are some dealers who have told us that they will not part take in the strike as they feel the reason for strike is unreasonable".

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The OMCs also said they will seek the help of police in case of law and order problems, hinting that the companies may look at alternative ways of distributing fuel. The petroleum dealers' body is demanding for an automated system to reflect price changes from the state-run oil marketing companies to avoid stopping sales every midnight to change the daily rates.

The union is said to be opposing the amended OMCs marketing discipline guidelines.

"It is unacceptable that they get minimum wages from oil companies and not give them to their employees", he said. After few penalties, the companies plan to suspend their licenses.

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Indian Oil's marketing director B S Canth said dealer commission was also hiked in November 2016 and March 2017. "We thought some demands are unrealistic and it is time we talk to everyone about it". On Tuesday, state-run oil marketers said they are baffled by the move as nearly all their demands have already been met but warned that being an Esma subject they may approach the states to scuttle the strike. If all central and state taxes on the petroleum products are put together, they will be more than 70 to 80 per cent, he said, pointing out that the concept of a broad GST is impossible until petroleum products, electricity and real estate are brought under its purview.

Issuing a soft warning to dealers, Canth said: "Let me remind you this is an essential commodity, so essential commodities Act is applicable here".

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