(MENAFN- NewsBytes) Commuters in Delhi/ NCRare likely to face problems on Thursday as a day-longtransport strikehas been called by the United Front of Transport Associations (UFTA) to protest against the amended Motor Vehicles Act.
The outfit is raising its voice against the steep traffic fines which wereimposedfrom September 1.
The impact of the strike was seen immediately as several schools remained shut.
First, let's tell you a bit about the Act
Spearheaded by Union Transport MinisterNitin Gadkari , the amended Act hopes to make country's roads safer, by levying heavy fines on traffic offenders.
Since its implementation, fines for offenses, like drunk-driving, not wearing a seat belt, and not carrying proper documents, have increased substantially.
However, some states, likeGujarat , have decided toreduce fines , while others, likeWest Bengal , decided against introducing the Act.
From 6 am till 10 pm, commuters will face inconvenience
UFTA, which comprises of nearly 41 transport associations, doesn't agree with the heavy fines and called for a strike to lodge a protest. The token strike will remain in force from 6 am to 10 pm, and is bound to affect the daily routine ofDelhi /NCR residents.
The outfit's convener Rajender Kapoor asked why hasn't Delhi government, led byArvind Kejriwal ,slashed the penalties .
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Kapoor added meetings didn't yield any results
"We had marathon meetings at offices of both Gadkari and Kejriwal on Tuesday. The CM himself wasn't present in meeting for more than five minutes, but we were made to hold parleys with their legal team. But the deadlock could not be resolved," he said.
The federation has other demands as well
Apart from a reduction in steep fines, the federation is also demanding benefits like medical facilities, insurance, as well as an increase in free parking time at railway stations and airports.
Gola added they have been seeking redressal from both Centre and state regarding the Act for the last 15 days, but no concrete steps were taken, "forcing them" to go on strike.
The hefty fines are affecting livelihood: UFTA President
Meanwhile, UFTA President Kultaran Singh Atwal said no one is listening to them. He added they had welcomed the Act initially, but it has now started affecting their livelihood.
"You've seen the hefty challans that are being issued for very petty violations. A vehicle is suddenly halted and huge challan is issued which the drivers are unable to pay," he toldIndia Today .
Delhi metro and buses will remain overcrowded today
Courtesy the strike, a large number of autos, Ola/Uber cabs, and private buses will stay off the roads on Thursday. This means Delhi Metro and buses will face the heat.
DTC buses, whose fleet is around 3,796, might struggle to meet the rise in demand.
To note, Air Asia issued an advisory on Twitter asking flyers to plan their arrival at airport wisely.
Request you to plan commute accordingly: Air Asia
Meanwhile, schools asked parents to arrange transport
Several schools, like Noida's Shiv Nadar School, Rohini's Mount Abu Public School, and Modern Public School in Shalimar Bagh, declared a holiday.
The institutes which decided to function normally asked parents to arrange transport for their wards.
"We have sent a message to the students that transport won't be plying but the school remains open," Suman Kumar, principal of Bluebells School International, toldTOI .
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