The divisional manager of IOC based in Imphal has expressed that the present scarcity of petroleum in the state is caused by insufficient security coverage of convoys on the highways with regard to the economic blockade imposed by UNC.
In an exclusive meeting with a section of the media at his BT Road office Divisional Manager Sinam Ibungoton said that on daily basis, the state only requires 50-60 truckloads of petroleum products in a continuous process.
During normal days the convoy was regular and as the supply was sufficient, but during the time of economic blockade frequency of security convoy has decreased drastically.
He said that for the month of December 2016 when the state is in the grip of economic blockade trucks loaded with petroleum products were ferried only for four times.
Considering the suffering of the state from economic blockade IOC had even given priority to Manipur affecting supply for Tripura and Mizoram states, he said.
Ibungoton further said that the process of filling and transportation of petroleum products is a lengthy and dedicated process. He said that the quantum of transporters cannot be increased or decreased at any given time. The condition of trucks, health of the truckers and road conditions has to be considered.
About 20 percent of total trucks are listed as ‘off road’ due to many reasons like break down but Divisional Manager somehow admitted that there are some trucks which are skipping their turns. Those defaulter truck owners were informed by IOCL to resume routine operations from next time.
Clarifying on numbers of trucks that are on duty, he said nearly 400 trucks are on duty including travelling in empty trucks, travelling out filled trucks, stranded filled trucks on roads and including those trucks those are in depot filling up products.
He submitted saying that the only means for sufficient supply of petroleum products in the state during the time crises is the deployment of regular security convoy for the safe and smooth transportation of products on national highways.
Source: Imphal Free Press