No hike at this petrol pump

Old Man’s Struggle Touches Station Owner’s Heart

M HYDERI

Srinagar, May 24: At a time when overnight record hike in petrol must have profited thousands of filling stations across the country, this one in Kashmir near old City, the Shaher-e-Khaas, did something unbelievable by selling his reserved lot at the previous rate –Rs 70.52 as against government’s freshly prescribed Rs 78.02 per litre.
This way, giving an unexpected benefit to consumers, Azad Filling Station at Munawarabad Thursday sold out its reserve stock of 18,000 litres, something which could have fetched the pump owner an additional profit of Rs 13,5720.
A beeline of vehicles was seen waiting for their turn to fill the fuel tanks at this Indian Oil Corporation Limited (IOCL) fed station. But for 32-year-old Sameer Azad, who runs the venture just adjacent to his ancestral house, there was no idea to sell his stock at Rs 7.54 per liter less than what was prescribed.
“Yesterday when the announcement came that the price would be hiked from midnight, I too was obviously hoping to make some extra bucks given my reserve stock,” Sameer confides adding “it was my legal right.”
But then something unusual at the filing station changed his mind. Sameer says last evening when many made to his pump, he saw an elderly auto-rickshaw driver with his weird three-wheeler rushing in.
“At first that old man, who must have been in his ‘60s got the auto (rickshaw) tank filled. Subsequently  he requested us to fill two white cans he had brought along… As a goodwill gesture, we agreed,” Sameer recaps.
This however wasn’t the end of old man’s desire to stock more, a few hours after which, the prices were all set to be hiked by around 10%. The oldie didn’t even spare his drinking water bottle. He threw away the water and requested the pump people to fill his “last container as well”. 
“This scene touched my heart because I thought it matters for them to save money,” the pump station owner says.
“That very moment my heart went out thinking of people, mostly the middle class from Shaher-e-Khaas who’ll have to pay extra from today. So I thought why not to benefit the people out of the reserve quota... Though I could have profited, I had nothing to lose,” the businessman, whose family also deals with walnut wood and leather exports, told Greater Kashmir.
But this goodwill gesture required a nod from the IOCL people. “They happily agreed saying that  Indian Oil has always been for the people and if I wanted to go for this goodwill gesture, they have no objections,” Sameer adds.
All day, many of those lucky to avail the unbelievable deal thanked the Azad Filling Station. Maqsood Begum, a consumer had this to say: “At times petrol pumps are accused of hoarding ahead of petrol price hike. But today I learnt that all aren’t the same.”
As for the pump owners, they are equally satisfied. “We received lots of good wishes… Even if a single Dua from someone’s heart realizes, that will InshaAllah be enough,” Sameer hopes as he makes something unbelievable come true.

Lastupdate on : Thu, 24 May 2012 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Thu, 24 May 2012 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Fri, 25 May 2012 00:00:00 IST




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