TDC appeals public not to discriminate drivers

IMPHAL, 23rd May: Amid complaints of discrimination and non-cooperation to drivers ferrying stranded state natives from Jiribam, Transporters and Drivers Council (TDC) has appealed people to cooperate and help drivers.
The TDC appeal came after a bus driver ferrying returnees from Jiribam to Imphal and then to district headquarters uploaded a post in social media highlighting problems faced by drivers amidst COVID-19 lockdown and discrimination faced by drivers from some sections of people. The post uploaded by driver of a bus ferrying returnees from Jiribam to Imphal went viral in social media.
As per the post, drivers ferrying stranded state natives from Jiribam are not only discriminated upon and treated indifferently by people but also denied access to shops for purchasing essential items. Some shops even down shutters when bus drivers try to purchase essentials, the post said adding that people even pelted stones to drivers when bus ferrying returnees halted on the way from Jiribam to Imphal. The post also said that workshops extend no cooperation to drivers when their vehicle suffer mechanical problem and this has been demoralising drivers who are rendering their invaluable service for the people with dedication.
State government had repeatedly assured to help drivers and provide PPE but no proper personal protection materials reach drivers, the post said adding that drivers shouldering immense responsibility of ferrying stranded people are now hesitant to operate the vehicles. The post also said that some sections of people seem to forget that drivers are bringing stranded state natives to their homes.
Soon after the post went viral in social media, TDC president H Ranjit informed The People’s Chronicle that whatever the driver said in the post were true and based on facts and drivers are shouldering immense responsibility of ferrying passengers while leaving their near and dear ones at homes.
Appealing people not to discriminate drivers who are in the forefront of the fight against COVID-19 pandemic, Ranjit said people will suffer more if drivers happen to suspend or cease operation.
Regarding water scarcity problem faced by drivers, H Ranjit said TDC will start providing drinking water in jar from Sunday onwards and the council will stand solidly for drivers in any problem. Appealing drivers to exercise maximum restraint despite facing numerous problems and not to make public any statement which could hurt sentiments of the people, H Ranjit said almighty God will understand humanitarian service of drivers and the current war against COVID-19 need drivers. He also assured drivers that TDC will lodge complaint to chief secretary if workshops and shops selling motor parts do not extend cooperation to drivers.

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