UP: Pumps observe strike against STF crackdown on fuel theft

RSTV Bureau
STF personnel inspect a petrol pump in old city area of Lucknow on Sunday. The petrol pump was ceased for cheating consumers.

STF personnel inspect a petrol pump in old city area of Lucknow on Sunday. The petrol pump was ceased for cheating consumers.

With the Uttar Pradesh special task force cracking down on errant petrol pumps across the state, their owners went on a strike here to protest against the action.

Several petrol pumps in Uttar Pradesh had been caught using electronic chips and remote controls to dispense a lower quantity of petrol and diesel to consumers.

A number of petrol pumps, including one owned by UP Petrol Pump Dealers’ Association President B N Shukla, had been sealed in the state capital after they were caught cheating.

“The petrol pumps in the state capital went on strike last night. Due to fear of STF action, the staff has run away and they had no option but to go on strike”, an official of the petrol pump association said.

While the strike is creating inconvenience for people, who were seen lining up outside the pumps which are open, the state government is expecting the the deadlock will end soon.

A Petrol pump sealed after STF officials found electronic chip which were used for fuel thef, in Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh on 28 April 2017.

A Petrol pump sealed after STF officials found electronic chip which were used for fuel thef, in Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh on 28 April 2017.

“The Yogi Adityanath government will not come under any pressure. The police action is justified and it was in favour of consumers. The Association memebers are likely to meet the CM and we expect the deadlock will end soon”, cabinet minister Suresh Kumar Khanna said.

The state STF had initiated the crackdown on April 27 night when it raided seven petrol pumps using electronic chips operating through remote control. The device, according to task force officials, helped them get profits worth around Rs 14 lakhs on an average per month.

The chip, costing around Rs 3,000, reduced the output by nearly five to ten per cent. It is attached with a wire linked to a remote control.

The remote control sets the limit and if a customer takes 1 litre petrol from any station, he would end up getting 940 ml or less.