Nationwide Protests Erupt as Truck and Bus Drivers Rally Against Stringent Hit-and-Run Law

Nationwide Protests Erupt as Truck and Bus Drivers Rally Against Stringent Hit-and-Run Law


A groundswell of discontent has emerged among truck and bus drivers across various states in India, as they vehemently oppose the recently enacted Bharatiya Nyaya (Second) Sanhita, 2023. The new law introduces severe penalties for hit-and-run cases, with offenders facing a 10-year jail term and a hefty fine of Rs 7 lakh.

The legislation, which supersedes the British-era Indian Penal Code (IPC), stipulates harsh consequences for fleeing an accident scene and failing to report the incident. In response, drivers have taken to the streets, staging protests that have disrupted traffic and sparked concerns about potential fuel shortages.


MAHARASHTRA In Maharashtra, truck drivers orchestrated “rasta roko” protests at multiple locations, expressing their discontent with the hit-and-run provision. Demonstrators briefly obstructed traffic on the Mumbai-Ahmedabad Highway in Thane district, resulting in clashes with law enforcement. Instances of stone-pelting left a policeman injured and a police vehicle damaged. Similar protests unfolded in Solapur, Kolhapur, Nagpur, and Gondia, raising worries about fuel supply disruptions.

CHHATTISGARH Commercial bus drivers and truckers in Chhattisgarh called for a work stoppage and staged protests against the contentious provision. Over 12,000 private bus drivers declared a strike, stranding hundreds of commuters at bus stations across cities like Raipur, Bilaspur, Durg, and Rajnandgaon. Fears of fuel shortages led to long queues at petrol pumps, exacerbating inconvenience for stranded commuters seeking alternative travel arrangements.

WEST BENGAL In West Bengal, truck and commercial vehicle drivers mounted a blockade on National Highway Number 2 near Dankuni toll plaza. The protest, which lasted approximately two hours, saw demonstrators burning tires and obstructing the road. Police intervention eventually cleared the blockade, allowing the resumption of traffic.

PUNJAB Punjab witnessed a substantial number of commercial vehicles, including trucks and buses, staying off the roads in protest against the new hit-and-run law. Truck drivers in Moga initiated a demonstration on the Ludhiana-Ferozepur Road, causing traffic disruptions. Support for the protest extended to drivers associated with Punjab Roadways, Punjab Road Transport Corporation (PRTC), and private bus companies, amplifying the impact of the demonstrations.

MADHYA PRADESH In Bhopal, drivers staged protests at Lalghati, disrupting city buses and vehicles. Road blockades were reported in various locations across the state, causing long queues at petrol pumps due to concerns over potential fuel supply disruptions. Indore saw buses parked at the Gangwal bus stand as part of the ongoing protests.

As the nationwide unrest unfolds, authorities are closely monitoring the situation, aiming to find a resolution to the grievances raised by the protesting drivers.