Petrol pump owners on Wednesday said they will protest against the state’s new ‘no helmet, no petrol’ directive, and will stop purchasing fuel from August 1.
“We will empty whatever stocks are at the pumps till July 31, after which there could be a shortage of fuel supply at the pumps,” said Ravi Shinde of Petrol Dealers’ Association. If this happens, from August 2, there could be problem getting petrol or diesel for your car and two-wheelers at the 223 pumps across Mumbai. The state government had issued the ‘no helmet, no petrol’ order last week to prevent the road accidents.
A source said that pump owners cannot call for a strike as petrol and diesel are essential commodities. “We cannot keep our pumps shut, and so we have decided to keep it open but not purchase fresh stocks. This is our extreme method of protest,” said a pump owner.
A source said that the association also plans to move the Bombay high court, which could delay implementation of the directive. The association has also demanded a better dealer commission, among other things.
The police have said that during the first fortnight of August, they will spread awareness at petrol pumps on the need for a helmet and ask drivers to fetch one before filling up petrol. From August 16, the police plan to enforce the rule and impose fines on offenders.