Uttar Pradesh: In a good news for the public, petrol pump owners have called off their strike after threatening to do so yesterday, according to ANI report. The decision was taken after a meeting between District Magistrate and petrol pump association in Lucknow. Earlier petrol pump owners had called for a strike over raids carried out by the Special Task Force (STF) of the Uttar Pradesh Police at petrol pumps over the last few days, the report says.
The STF of the Uttar Pradesh Police had arrested 23 persons for using chips in petrol pumps to dupe people buying fuel, an official said on Saturday. Seven petrol pumps in the state capital have also been sealed, he had informed, according to IANS story.
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Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan had ordered inspection of all petrol pumps in Uttar Pradesh and random checks elsewhere to detect short-selling of petrol and diesel by tampering with the system in dispensing units.
Pradhan said that though the responsibility of right quantity of product dispensed lies with state governments as their weights and measures department installs seals on dispensing units, two officials of state-owned fuel retailers have been suspended following the raids. “We have initiated action against respective field officers. The strictest possible action will be taken against guilty petrol pumps, including termination of licence,” he was quoted as saying PTI.
According to the report, the arrested persons include nine petrol pump owners, nine managers, four employees and an electrician. After consumers complained about alleged malpractices at certain fuel stations, Director General of Police (DGP) Sulkhan Singh handed over the probe to the STF, an elite force to take on organised crime.
The probe revealed a huge racket after which these arrests were made, an official told IANS.
DGP Singh had also issued an advisory to all District Magistrates to ensure that similar crimes do not take place at petrol pumps in their districts. An official, privy to the investigations, said that each petrol pump was swindling over Rs 50,000 per day by using this chip to give lesser fuel while charging for the full amount.
During the raids conducted by the STF, many machines, chips and remote controls were also recovered and they have now been sealed. Among those arrested were Rajendra, Virendra Singh Bhadoria, Shared Chandra Vaishya, Rajan Awasthi, Ashok Kumar Pal, Anoop Mittal, Haseeb Ahmad, Govind Pandey and Prem Kumar Ojha.