In response to the Tamil Nadu Lorry Owners Federation’s plea to provide road tax relief for the lockdown period, the Tamil Nadu government told the Madras High Court that the government cannot consider road tax exemption for lorry owners. The government claimed that the road tax relief would cost a whopping Rs. 1,724.43 crore to the state, should it be implemented.
Truck drivers in India are asking for your help. Please donate now: https://bit.ly/2RweeKH
As per the state government, “Since the movement of goods transport vehicles were not banned even by the state or the central government, the question of granting exemption from payment of road tax for April to September could not arise. Lockdown period has not affected free flow of goods.”
According to the plea made by the Federation, lorry owners were privy to great financial losses during the nationwide lockdown and thus are seeking relief in form of road tax exemption. The state government, however, countered with the fact that the government during the period under question had not restricted movement of trucks for essential items.
As per the orders of the Union transport ministry, extension of validity of documents related to Motor Vehicles Act was also provided to such vehicles till June 30 as well. Along with that, an extension till June 30 was also provided for road tax payment without any penalties.
The Tamil Nadu state government asserted that keeping the above extensions in mind, along with the financial load on the state due to the exemption, the Federation’s demands are not viable and justified.