Sunday, May 6, 2018

Agreement ends transport cartels

Ministry of Physical Infrastructure and Transport and transport entrepreneurs agreed to end the cartel and operate under Company Act in the transport sector after marathon rounds of discussions.
In a meeting held at the Ministry in Kathamndu tonight, transport minister Raghubir Mahaseth, transport secretary and director general of the Department of Transport Management discussed with the agitating transport entrepreneurs to end the cartel. After the five-point agreement, the transport entrepreneurs have also expressed their commitment to support the government initiatives to end the transport cartel by officially withdrawing all kinds of protest programmes. The two sides have also reached an agreement to form a taskforce to make the transport sector more effective and transparent.
The two sides agreed to end all form of cartel in public transportation, to allow individuals with only one public transport to provide services, form a probe committee as per the mandamus issued by the Supreme Court, form a committee incorporating ministers and concerned agencies for consultation, and withdraw from all forms of protests.
Both the parties are going to organise a joint press conference tomorrow to announce the details of agreement reached between the government and transport entrepreneurs.
Late evening, the government has also released 106 transport entrepreneurs including Federation of Nepalese National Transport Entrepreneurs (FNNTE) president Yogendra Nath Karmacharya, senior vice president Bijay Bahadur Swar, general secretary Punya Prasad Sitaula (Saroj), deputy general secretary Basanta Bhandari, treasurer Kiran Kumar Khadka and in-charge of Province 3 Dharma Raj Rimal, who were arrested by the police for not operating their vehicles on Friday.
The transport entrepreneurs – on Friday – had halted public vehicles across the country to force the government to withdraw from its decisions of implementing the new regulation that has directed all the transporters to register their transport committees as a company.
Currently, most of the public vehicles operate under the committees and are blamed for evading tax.
However, the government struck as home minister Ram Bahadur Thapa directed to arrest transport entrepreneurs, cancel route permits and freez their bank accounts. The central bank – after the Home Ministry's request – froze 245 bank accounts of transport entrepreneurs and their committees in the afternoon.

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