The transport sector in Karnataka is experiencing a setback due to the rising prices of fuel. The price of petrol in the past 10 days has increased by Rs. 4 per litre for diesel and by Rs. 3.5 per litre for petrol in the state. This has impacted the commercial vehicle owners in the state.
As per the Karnataka Foundation of Lorry Owners Associations, over one lakh trucks have gone off-road due to rising prices of fuel. The president of the association, in this regard, said, “The cost of running a truck has touched Rs 28 per km now from Rs 19-20 km last year.”
Besides this, thousands of cab vehicle owners have surrendered their permits in the state in recent times. There are around 15,000 cabs and private buses which have surrendered their licenses from the past year.
There has also been a huge dip in the registration of new commercial vehicles in the state. Hemanth Kumar, the additional transport commissioner in this regard, said – “Prior to the pandemic, we used to register around 10,000 commercial vehicles including cabs, taxis, buses and trucks every month. Now the number is just 200-300 vehicles.”
This is a dent to the commercial vehicle industry in the state, which was slowly recovering from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The situation is also troubling for passenger buses when they have to pay road tax every quarter of several thousand rupees. Major players of passenger vehicles have taken 20-25% of their fleet vehicles away from the road.