After acquiring ACC and Ambuja Cement, the Adani group has proposed a major overhaul in the transportation and freight rate for the carriage of goods in Himachal Pradesh, which it believes is inefficient, leading to “far-reaching consequences for all stakeholders”.
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In a letter to the HP state government, Adani Cement has suggested that operational decisions regarding transportation should be decided by the companies as is the practice in other states.
“Deployment, route, etc, to be decided by companies based on market principles…capacity and type of trucks to be decided by companies as per their transportation needs and swapping of bags between Ambuja/ACC units and other group companies to be permitted,” the letter said.
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The company has pointed out that the freight rate in the state is “controlled by the unions” who have “artificially kept it at very a high level”. The population of trucks in the state is three times the demand.
Adani Cement has proposed that the optimum km/annum should be increased to 50,000 km per annum over a three-year period; for a smooth transmission it should be 40,000 km in the first year followed by 45,000 km in the second year. It has pointed out that trucks deployed by ACC and Ambuja in other states run 80,000-100,000 km per annum. Compared to this, the distance travelled in HP is just one-fourth of the national average and the lowest in the country, the letter said. Further, Ambuja and ACC require 550 trucks in HP as against the current deployment of 3,311. Hence the company proposes the “excess” trucks be phased out in the next three years.