Transporters’ body to ride along

Kathmandu, December 4:

Transport fares should be adjusted according to the rise and fall in the price of petroleum products, according to Nepal National Transport Entrepreneurs’ Supreme Federation (NNTESF) president Vishnu Siwakoti. Expressing his support for the decision of the government regarding fare rate adjustments in local transportation, he said, “The rates of public transportation should be maintained according to the swing in the price of petroleum products.” He added, “We are also consumer and we should make adjustments in local transportation fares for the general public.”

However, Siwakoti said that the government had not done its homework in scientific research on varying prices of other products in the market. “Along with the issue of price adjustment in public transportation fares, the government should also investigate the market regarding ups and downs in prices of other products also such as tyres, lubricants, insurance premiums and do a detailed study of these to fix transportation fares. That would be more logical,” he said.

Siwakoti said student discount in public transportation fares leads to transport sector facing deficit and added the government should also provide some discount in the revenue taken from the transport sector.

“We will work to promote transport sector,” said Siwakoti. He added that as the number of vehicles running in the valley was increasing, to maintain a balance a task force or high-level council should be formed. One-window system should be maintained so that the process for the payment of insurance, municipality tax, renewal tax, registration tax and other payments would be streamlined, he urged.

Siwakoti also said that improvement must be made in terms of management of cargo truck pass, which is in quite a depressing condition currently. “The Indian registration plate vehicles are a problem, especially in the Tarai region. Discounts are available for Indian vehicles in Nepal but Nepali vehicles do not get any discount. This discrimination must be done away with soon,” an NNTESF statement said.

The Supreme Court revived NNTESF on November 16 after it was dissolved by the District Administration Office, Kathmandu, on November 5, 2006, added the NNTESF statement.