A section of petroleum dealers said they would shut their retail outlets every Sunday starting May 14. Many see this as a tactic to pressure government for higher commission.
The Consortium of Indian Petroleum Dealers (CIPD) on Monday asked members to shut shop on Sundays, in line with the prime minister's vision to reduce fuel consumption. The association claims to have more than 25,000 petrol pumps covering south and Maharashtra. All India Petroleum Dealers' Association came out in the public distancing itself from the decision.
The move by CIPD comes at a time when the government is yet to take a call on raising dealer's commission.
CIPD president A D Sathyanarayan
told Business Standard that, except for emergency services like ambulance, fuel will not be available for other vehicles on Sundays. The association is also considering eight-hour working days from May.
Distancing itself from the move, president of All India Petroleum Dealers' Association Ajay Bansal
said, "This will create panic. The association that has called for such a move has presence in only Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, and Maharashtra. We are not supporting this decision, while we also have the same demands to increase (dealer's commission)."
India has 56,190 fuel retail outlets, of which public sector majors like Indian Oil Corporation, Bharat Petroleum, and Hindustan Petroleum have a combined network of 52,604 outlets.
In 2015-16, the overall fuel demand zoomed to 183.5 million tonnes from 165.5 million tonnes in the previous financial year. While diesel consumption increased 7.5 per cent to 74.6 million tonnes, petrol use rose 14.5 per cent to 21.8 million tonnes.