Sikkim’s Transport Department Secretary SBS Bhaduria on Tuesday said the Himalayan state has not yet received an official confirmation on neighbouring West Bengal cancelling a transport agreement between the two states.
Mr Bhaduria convened a meeting of Transport Department officials to take stock of the situation amid media reports that the Bengal government has stopped issuing permits to commercial vehicles from Sikkim.
“There is no official confirmed document regarding the cancellation of the transport agreement so far,” Mr Bhaduria said after the meeting. “But the Sikkim Government wants to resolve the problems, without hampering the interest of both the states,” he added.
Earlier, West Bengal Transport Minister Suvendu Adhikari had reportedly accused the Sikkim government of not abiding by the agreement signed in 2013 and imposing restrictions on vehicles entering the state from Bengal.
He said that his government had cancelled the agreement that allowed free movement of commercial vehicles between the two states. According to reports, Mr Adhikari lamented that the Sikkim government allowed such vehicles to go to only select places like Gangtok, Namchi and Pelling.
He said that Sikkim had imposed restrictions on the movement of Bengal vehicles even as West Bengal allowed movement of the vehicles freely in Bengal.
However, it may be mentioned that Darjeeling had recently decided to now allow any commercial vehicle that came from outside the town and that carried tourists from entering certain places in the town.