Shops and petrol pumps remain closed following protest strike by traders

Tuesday, Mar 1, 2016,11:43 IST By metrovaartha A A A

Kochi: Shops and petrol pumps in the state remained closed Tuesday following protest strikes by traders.

Nearly 2,000 petrol pumps in Kerala did not open Tuesday as the All Kerala Federation of Petroleum Traders has called an indefinite strike to protest the oil companies’ stance of not renewing license for petrol pumps.

Only a few bunks directly run by oil companies and Supplyco are functioning. Long queues formed in these outlets as vehicle owners lined up to refill fuel.

If the outstanding issues that led to the strike are not settled, it will affect normal life as vehicles run out of fuel.

Also Tuesday, thousands of shops and markets in the state remain closed down as KeralaVyapari Vyavasaayi Ekopana Samiti has called for a dawn to dusk closure to protest against the alleged harassment by Government officials. Sreekumar, owner of Chitra Stores in Ambalappuzha, committed suicide Monday. KVVES alleges that he ended his life unable to pay huge amount of fine charged by Commercial Taxes officials.

Traders held protest march to sales tax offices in all districts Tuesday.

All Kerala Distributors Association and Kerala Merchant Chamber of Commerce are also taking part in the strike.