Petrol pump and tank-lorry owners and workers on Friday have reiterated their plan for an indefinite strike from Jan 20 as the government is yet to concede their eight-point charter of demands, including a hike in commission on sales of fuel oil, within their stipulated deadline.
Nazmul Haque, Convener of Bangladesh Petrol Pump Owners and Tank-Lorry Owners-Workers Unity Council, announced the strike call from a press briefing at its headquarters in the city’s Kakrail.
Five days have passed since they first threatened to go on strike, but the government is yet to meet their demands.
“In this circumstance, we’re all set to go on a countrywide work stoppage for an indefinite period from 6am on Sunday. We’ll continue our strike until our demands are met,” Haque said.
“Tomorrow (Saturday) is the last day of our deadline. We’ll withdraw our programme if the government take positive steps ,” he added.
Around 9,000 petrol pumps will remain close across the country if the owners go for the strike, he said.
The petrol pump owners have been demanding 3.4 percent hike in commission on sale of diesel and 4 percent on sale of petrol and octane.
The owners are now getting 2.45 percent commission on sale of diesel and 3.27 percent on petrol while 3.30 percent on octane sale at present.
The government on Jan 3 increased prices of diesel and kerosene by Tk 7 per litre and those of petrol and octane by Tk 5 per litre. The commission of the nationalised oil companies were increased by Tk 0.03 to Tk 0.05 per litre the same night, when the latest hike in oil prices came into effect.
Haque said that the recent price hike of fuel forced petrol pump and lorry owners to spend Tk 63,000 more on each tanker carrying fuel (9,000 litres capacity), as the rise in commission was very nominal.