North-East India Petroleum Dealers called for an indefinite strike and closure of around 80 petrol pumps in the Greater Guwahati area.
A meeting was held in the office chamber of the Additional Deputy Commissioner (ADC) that featured Kamrup (M) representatives including Additional Deputy Commissioner Manoj Kumar Sikaria. The meeting was necessitated after calls of an indefinite strike were made on Friday.
The association has accused Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited (BPCL) of harassing a city dealer, Ellora Debi, who is a proprietor of RRND Service Station, Beltola, Guwahati. “During these testing times when the government and even the Courts have made relaxation owing to the community spread of the pandemic, we regret informing you that the oil companies have continued to harass dealers on various issues,” said the dealers association in a statement.
In its statement, the body alleged that time and again, the BPCL is forcing Debi to sign the dealership agreement. “They even threatened to stop the supply of petrol and diesel if she fails to sign the agreement by August 31,” it said, As per the association, Ellora Debi by writing several letters to the Manager (Sales) of BPCL had asked for the extension of time due to the pandemic. However, her pleas fell on deaf ears, claimed the organization.
The body further said that facing harassment, Ellora Debi had to go to court to draft the agreement following which she contracted a coronavirus infection. Her husband, who has comorbid conditions, also tested positive for the virus. While Debi and her husband are receiving treatment for the virus, the BPCL has stopped the supply of petrol and diesel to the dealer, the association alleged.
After a threadbare discussion, the meeting came to a conclusion with the following decisions: The BPCL will provide high-speed diesel and motor spirit to the depot in question by giving 3 months’ time up to December 2020, within which they will have to regularize the agreement.