Punjab Hotmix Plant Owners gives 10 days' ultimatum to Govt, demand increase in Common Schedule Rates
Ferozepur, May 18, 2022: Today, a meeting of Hotmix Plant Owners Association Punjab was held under the tutelage of Balwinder Singh, President, which was attended by more than 100 members, to discuss in-depth, the problems being faced regarding ongoing developments in the state.
Due to the problems being faced in the absence of revision of increase in Common Schedule Rates - CSR, around Rs.2,300 cr development projects in the state have been put on hold by the 200 Hotmix Plant Owners, in protest against the increasing rates of various raw materials. The HPO Association is giving employment to more than two lakh families in the state and the families of labourers and workers are likely to suffer, for not carrying out any work.
Addressing the media persons, President Balwinder Singh said, the contractors are facing various problems with the high increase in rates of raw materials like sand, bajri, stone, gatka, bitumen, diesel, petrol, bricks, steel, cement, etc. The summer season is the right time to carry on the work from Hotmix Plants and with the existing market rates, Rs.1 crore project is now costing around Rs.1.75 cr putting a heavy loss on the contractors.
He said, when the work was allotted to them, the rates were reasonable and profitable as well but now it is beyond one’s control to carry on with the existing rates on Common Schedule Rates (CSR).
Balwinder Singh said, there is an increase of 30% in the rates sand, the rates of diesel and petrol has doubled over the rates as per the estimates and it is a continuous process, rates of bitumen has also doubled and it is also increasing after every fortnight, 40% increase in the rates of bricks, the steel estimate has also gone high from Rs.58 per kg to 85 per kg and the cement rates per bag has gone up from Rs.299 to Rs.410.
Getting no response from the government despite approaching, the Association has decided to intensify the agitation and give 10 days’ notice to gherao the Chief Minister at Chandigarh on May 28. At the same time, he made an appeal to the government to allow to close of the existing agreements by the interested parties, and new tenders may be called.
Regretting the inconvenience to be public on account of holding the projects, he said, it is a matter of record that during the last government led by Capt Amarinder Singh, the CSR rates were revised two times in two months. The same can be considered to be revised on the same analogy now to give relief to the Hotmix Plant Owners.
One of the members said, whenever there is an increase in the price of either diesel or petrol, the government involves itself in that matter and gets it solved. But the number of people who buy bitumen is far less than those consuming petrol and diesel. So the government is showing a step-motherly attitude towards us. We are incurring huge losses every day and ant that the government should step forward and help us out.