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Despite a cut in the price of diesel by Rs.1.30 per litre on April 16, 2016, trucks rentals continued to rise. Truck rentals rose between one and 1.5 per cent on key trunk routes across the country according to S.P. Singh, Senior fellow and coordinator, IFTRT. The reason for firmness in truck rentals in the period between April 2, 2016 and April 16, 2016, was attributed by Singh to early harvesting of wheat crop in several northern states. The crop, he said, matured early due to summer temperature going up phenomenally from last week of March until the first week of April 2016. Close to 15 per cent national permit holding trucks were diverted to intra-state operations for transportation of the wheat crop. The rise in rentals was also attributed to the early arrival of summer fruits and vegetables due to the rise in temperature. Fruits and vegetables ripened early, leading to a higher demand for trucks on short and medium haul from procurement centres to APMCs. Truck rentals rose between 3 and 4 per cent in March 2016. They rose in February as well; in the region of 4 to 5 per cent. In April 2016, factory output too witnessed growth, providing additional truck utilisation and improved round trips on trunk routes. Cargo offerings rose by 10-15 per cent. The demand for fleet expansion as a result has been positive.

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