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Container Handling Operations in Chennai Katupalli and Ennore ports to be affected from March 19

Exports and imports through Containers in the three key ports of Chennai  Ennore and Katupalli ports are likely to be seriously affected from March 19th as 12 container Truck Associations have served  strike notice threatening indefinite stoppage of work in all the three ports  from that day.

About four thousand container trailer Operators who are working from around 300 container freight stations in and around Chennai are expected to participate in the strike demanding among other things a 20 per cent increase in freight rates over the ones agreed upon four years ago.

With the dues from the Container Freight Stations piling up to nearly Rs twenty five Crores,  the association has insisted that the Freight station Operators, Steamer Agents, Custom House Agents and the export import parties to make payments to lorry owners within fifteen days of billing. Trailer Operator Association Sources said container freight stations like Sanco have not cleared their dues to container truck operators for several months. Others are also following suit leaving us with no option but to stop work.

The transport operators said they are reeling under the impact of 20 per cent hike in lubrication cost on vehicles, 60 per cent increase in vehicle inductance, 25 per cent increase in tyres and 25 per cent increase in spares. Under these circumstances if the bills are not cleared in time, there is no point in continuing to ply the vehicles said a spokesman of the industry,

The Associations have served strike notice National Association of Container Freight Stations (NACFS) and Chennai Port Chairman. Though they have not served strike notice on Katupalli  and Ennore ports, the container trailer lorries will not operate to any of these ports from March 19 if their demands are not met by that day.

There has been no response from NACFS barring the suggestion that lorry operators need to get the bills cleared by the concerned exporters and importers.

The deadlock continues since there has been no attempt to hold conciliation talks. However it remains to be seen if the Container truck operators will implement the threat,

If the threat materializes container handling in both the terminals of Chennai port, Katupalli and Ennnore ports will be seriously affected. In the case of Kamaraj port at Ennore container traffic is yet to pick up since the Adani terminal has been going slow during the last seven months since it was commissioned.

 

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