Coimbatore: Even though there isn’t a lot of work during the lockdown period, Madukkarai-based electrician B Dhandapani goes to his town hall workplace on his two-wheeler every day.
Dhandapani does not know when he will find a job. But he can’t afford to miss everything that comes his way. Whether or not he manages to find work, he has to pay Rs 200 per day in fuel. With each passing week, the amount he spends on fuel keeps increasing due to rising fuel prices. On Friday, the price of gasoline hit nearly Rs Rs 100 per liter in Coimbatore.
“Two years ago, I was filling up with gasoline for Rs 150 every day. But now I’m spending Rs 50 more. I spent almost Rs 6,000 per month, which is about 40% of my family’s income, on fuel, ”said Dhandapani, whose wife works as a domestic in Ganapathy. “Before, she would go by bus to her workplace by bus. But now that bus services are temporarily suspended due to lockdown, I have to drop her. Unlike mine, his salary is fixed and today we manage expenses with his salary. So I have no choice but to let her down. Even if my job ends early, I have to wait for her until she finishes her job, ”he told TOI.
Like the Dhandapanis, most families in the neighborhood are affected by the rise in the price of oil. While some reduce their gas expenses by limiting vehicle use, others pay the price.
Mr Gunasekaran, a graphic designer based in Keeranatham, spent at least Rs 150 per day on fuel to get to his workplace in Gandhipuram. “We have limited buses from Keeranatham and also, I am concerned about Covid infection when using public transport. I spent about 25% of my salary on fuel. Sometimes I am forced to fill up with gasoline, which is a few rupees higher than normal gasoline, due to the unavailability of normal gasoline.
Arun Kumar Unnikrishnan, a resident of Vellalore, decided to use his motorbike instead of his car to save fuel. “Two years ago, I was filling up with gasoline for around Rs 500 to Rs 600 per week. Now I spend Rs 1000. I used to use my car often, but now I have decided to only use the car when absolutely necessary.