Petroleum pump owners decry IOC move to allot new outlets
Thiruvananthapuram: The All-Kerala Federation of Petroleum Traders on Thursday criticised the decision of Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) to allot 600 more fuel pumps in the state, saying it was done without evaluating the actual need and the business feasibility factors.
In a statement, the federation said opening new pumps without making feasibility studies would adversely affect the existing petrol pumps. They threatened to launch an agitation if the decision was not revoked.
If the company declined to revoke the decision, the dealers in the state would close down outlets on July 16 and 17 and launch other modes of agitation, Federation President Alex Vallkkalil said.
He added that the decision also went against the Petroleum Ministry's norm that the actual need of the area should be the prime consideration while allotting new pumps.
Vallkkalil said a pump should sell at least 130 kilo litres (kl) of fuel to be financially feasible.
Opening fuel outlets without a valid reason would also do a disservice to the consumers, who indirectly share the setting up costs that ranges from Rs 50 lakh to Rs 1 crore, he added.
In Kochi, Federation Secretary M Radhakrishnan claimed a total of 1,000 new pumps were proposed to be set up by the oil companies, including IOC.
"Unscientific" sanction of new pumps, would eat into the profit margins of the existing pumps, he said, adding over 80 percent pumps were under threat of closure.
The federation also demanded immediate implementation of the recommendations of the government appointed Apurva Chakaravarthy committee report which went into the problems of the pump owners.