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Hoping to resolve dispute between transporters, cement factories: HP Min

Himachal Pradesh Industry Minister Harshwardhan Chauhan said that the dispute between the truck operators and cement plant owners will be resolved soon

Cement factory

Cement factory

ANI General News
Himachal Pradesh Industry Minister Harshwardhan Chauhan said that the dispute between the truck operators and cement plant owners will be resolved soon.
He said that after sets of meetings he had chaired the meeting of transporters and cement industry representatives of the Adani group.
"It will be addressed very shortly. It is resulting in a loss of crores of rupees to the state. I don't have the exact figure, it is in Crores, it includes the royalty, sale tax, VAT and also in transportation and this loss could be in crores," said Chauhan.
He said that the government has constituted a committee headed by the Principal Secretary of transport to resolve the issue.
"Basically it is a dispute between the transporters and the company owners we are working as a facilitator and mediator in it. Our government has constituted a committee headed by the Principal Secretary of transport which includes the secretary of transport, director of transport, director of industry and they had several meetings and yesterday. I chaired the meeting yesterday and have asked both the parties to resolve the issue and request to start the cement plants," the Minister further added.
Chauhan said that the state government is ready to compensate the Adani group in the state to accommodate the losses.
"I have asked the cement plant and Representatives of Adani to resume operations and the government is ready to accommodate and compensate them. We are facing losses of several Crores rupees every day we want the revenue for the state but the government is in a bad financial state. The state is in a debt of over Rs 75,000 crore. We will have to generate Rs 10000 crore per month as debt. We shall address all these issues with the passage of time," he said.
On being asked about the allegation by the cement plant company authorities that transporters are adopting illegal practices, the Minister said that it would be addressed with the passage of time.
"These practices are started conventionally. We shall resolve it with the passage of time. Our main concern is to resume the factory and issues of the factory owner and transporters could be addressed. I have also expressed the displeasure of the government to the Adani group that you have closed the cement plants without informing the government which has caused the loss of several Crore rupees to the state government. You would have negotiated the rates and closed it after that if it had not been acceptable to you," he said.
We have tried to initiate a middle way after negotiation so that the cement plant is also started and also the business of transporters resumes. The HIMCON has also made a report of the modalities on the transportation cost on the basis of the directions of the high court. That report will be discussed with the Chief Minister and on the basis of that notification will be done to notify rates," Chauhan added.
He said that very soon the state government will notify the freight rates and the matter is expected to be resolved.
"We will have to see the reactions after the rates are notified. We are trying to adopt a middle way so that the transporters do not get losses and also the factory owner is also satisfied. The disputes are of the rates and for that HIMCON is giving a report. We will have to see in the larger interest of the state. The transporters are in a bad state and it is the only source of income for the transporters and we are also concerned for that too, "the Industry Minister further added.The letter from the Adani group to the permanent standing committee given on Friday to the government has stated to end of the authority of the Unions of transporters in the transportation of cement.
"We thank you and the Sub-Committee for continuing to lend your valuable time to resolve this issue. We request the Sub-Committee to consider our proposal favourably on the basis of mutual discussion," read the letter from Adani Cement.
The letter from Adani group giving suggestions reads, "Considering all the factors, the optimum km per annum would be 50,000 for calculation of the freight. However, in order to make the transition smooth and equitable we propose to achieve this in a timeframe of 3 years."The letter also suggests reducing the number of trucks from the plants.
"As mentioned in our earlier letter dated 12th January 2023, both Ambuja and ACC's requirement is 550 trucks as against the current deployment of 3311. Hence, it is proposed to phase out the excess trucks in the timeframe of the next three years." Letter suggests.The suggestions from the company authorities also talk about the Immediate "moratorium on adding any new trucks."
"All operational decisions regarding transportation to be decided by the companies as is the practice in other states," reads the letter of the company.
On December 15, the cement production of the Ambuja Plant at Darlaghat in Solan and ACC in Barmana of Bilaspur district were suddenly closed down sitting losses and showing helplessness to continue production due to high freight rates by the transports. The dispute still continues even after several rounds of meetings with government intervention.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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First Published: Jan 21 2023 | 11:27 PM IST

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