OMCs won’t negotiate on fuel dealers’ discipline rules: Official

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New Delhi, Oct 10 (IANS) The government is not going to back down on the new marketing discipline guidelines being opposed by petroleum dealers who have called a one-day strike later this week, a senior state-run oil company official said on Tuesday.

Dealers are protesting marketing guidelines amended by public sector oil marketing companies (OMCs), which introduce stringent penal action for offences involving short delivery of products, operating automated retail units on manual mode and improper maintenance of toilets.

“There needs to be a reason for the dealers’ demand. We are not going to negotiate on the guidelines given out on October 2,” Indian Oil Director (Marketing) Balwinder Singh Canth told reporters here on the sidelines of the first CERAWEEK India Energy Forum.

“Our guidelines are in the interest of the consumer and we will not put public into inconvenience during this festive season,” he said.

The new guidelines also direct dealers to pay minimum wages as notified by the OMCs, while salaries now have be paid through e-payment only.

Around 54,000 petrol pumps all over India will go on a 24-hour strike from Thursday midnight demanding inclusion of petroleum products under the new Goods and Services Tax (GST) regime and other long pending issues.

Canth also said that about 1,000 company-owned-company-Operated (COCO) outlets of the three OMCs will have products available in order to ensure there is no shortage of supplies in the coming week.

–IANS

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