NO HELMET, NO FUEL RULE – Dealers to strike from Aug 1

Protesting against state’s severe action, MPDA has decided to stop purchasing fuels altogether
After the state government’s decision to implement the `no helmet, no fuel’ rule, along with the public the Maharashtra Petrol Dealers Associ ation (MPDA) has taken a stand to go on strike from August 1.Protesting against the stringent actions, petrol pumps across the state will not be selling petrol and diesel from the same date the new rule is to be implemented -August 1.The decision was taken at a meeting by the MPDA in Mumbai where all the petrol pump dealers were in attendance. “It was resolved at the meeting that all the dealers in the state will go on a no-purchase of fuel from August 1 in protest against the `no helmet, no fuel’ rule.Petrol and diesel are listed in the Essential Commodities Act, according to which we cannot refuse to sell fuel to our customers if we are in possession of the product,“ said Ali Daruwala, spokesperson of the Pune Petrol Dealers Association.

Caught in a dilemma, the fuel dealers in the state have decided to go on strike. “The state transport minister with the new order has directed us not to sell petrol when the customer is not wearing a helmet and if we do not comply, criminal actions will be taken against us. We have decided not to break any laws till the state government withdraws the rule or abolishes severe actions against the dealers,“ added Daruwala.

State transport minister Diwakar Raote had earlier announced that helmetless twowheeler riders would no longer be able to purchase fuel at any petrol pump across the state.Following this, a government resolution was passed on July 21, that it was compulsory for both two-wheeler and pillion riders to wear helmets. The GR also stated that action would be taken against dealers if they were found selling fuel to helmetless riders.

However, locals are furious about the petrol dealers’ decision. Rakesh Shah, an IT professional, said, “Now, I have to fill up my bike’s petrol tank completely and also reserve it in cans if this strike goes on for long. The state government should not make helmets compulsory to get petrol at the pumps.“

Another biker Abhishek Khole said, “This is a completely wrong decision by the state government. I wear a helmet while riding, but there are many who do not realise the importance of this step. But, to stop them from purchasing fuels is just not right.“

Source : Mirror