ISLAMABAD: The capital administration is in the process of convincing transporters not to participate in the nationwide strike against increase in taxes.

Deputy Commissioner Irfan Nawaz Memon told Dawn that the administration was holding negotiations with transporters and trying to convince them not to participate in the strike. Islamabad is a small city and people will suffer, he said, adding that the strategy of local transporters is yet to be cleared.

Transporters’ Association President Irfan Niazi said all intra-city passenger bus services were closed in the twin cities since Aug 1. All 22 bus terminals of the intra-city bus services remained closed and 7,500 long route passenger vehicles were parked inside and around the terminals, he added.

The strike was planned against the increase in taxes, Mr Niazi said, adding that due to this increase, it was impossible for transporters to operate their business.

Hike in prices makes the life of citizens miserable because everything is beyond the reach of normal people, he said, adding that transporters did not want to get the amount from the pocket of commuters to pay taxes, but under the present situation it was hard to run the business. So far, only long route transporters participated in the strike while local transport is operational in the twin cities, only to accommodate locals, he said.

However, Mr Niazi said highways and roads would be blocked if the government did not accept their demands and reduce taxes.

Negotiation will only be held with the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) chairman or the finance minister as the matter was related to them and the local administration had nothing to do with it, he added.

Published in Dawn, August 4th, 2022

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