Oil tankers go on strike, demand change in new rules

Supply to up-country areas disrupted


Imran Asghar December 16, 2020
ISLAMABAD:

The All Pakistan Oil Tankers Owners Association (APOTOA) announced a strike on Wednesday, hampering the supply of petroleum products to up-country areas. 

The strike was announced in order to pressurise the government to accept their demands. The association has gone on strike against the change in rules barring oil tankers from entering city areas during daytime hours. 

Noman Butt, general secretary of APOTOA, said that the Rawalpindi administration had banned the entry of oil tankers during the day, which was not acceptable and implementable. He added that talks have been held and letters sent to the relevant officials, including the petroleum secretary.

The general secretary said that the supply of petroleum products to the twin cities, Azad Kashmir, Gilgit-Baltistan, Islamabad Airport and power plants has also been stopped.

A commission of inquiry formed in July this year to probe into a sudden shortage of petrol in the country has noted that one of the reasons behind the crisis was a lack of coordination among the departments working under the Petroleum Division.

This is revealed in a report of the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) led inquiry panel. The commission has submitted its report to Prime Minister Imran Khan who has asked the relevant officials to present it before the federal cabinet in its meeting to be held on Tuesday.

The report, available with The Express Tribune, said oil marketing companies (OMCs) were primarily responsible for the shortage of the fuel that hit the country in early June as they deliberately stopped supplying petroleum products to pumps despite having considerable stocks at their disposal.

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