While it has been more than a month since the Karnataka Transport Department directed popular cab aggregators Ola and Uber to withdraw its carpooling services, taxi drivers complain that the service was still on. They also pointed out that these cab aggregators were threatening their drivers to provide carpool services or incur fines.
Ola, Taxiforsure and Uber Drivers and Owners Association President, Tanveer Pasha told Deccan Chronicle, "It has been a month after transport department banned carpooling, but these cab aggregators continue to operate these services. This shows the corruption of the Transport Department.”
He pointed out that while taxi drivers are promptly fined if they don’t carry the driving licence or registration certificate, these companies have ignored the ban and no action has so far been taken.
The carpooling facilities are popular as the rides cost up to 50 per cent less than the usual cab aggregator fares, which are cheaper than radio taxis.
The cab drivers have been demanding a ban as it was badly hurting their business and they also point out that it is not safe.
The Motor Vehicles Act was enacted by parliament in 1988, primarily to standardize licensing norms, prevent accidents and ensure effective compensation for accident victims. Encouraging shared transport or solutions to reduce congestion was not the original purpose of the law.
"It's very difficult for taxi drivers to continue these services because they get only Rs 6 per kilometre, which is less than auto fares. The drivers are forced to operate carpooling services by aggregator. They threaten to slap a fine on them. So we have decided to approach the transport department on Monday and request them to take strict action against aggregators or we will have to go for a protest,” Pasha added.
Carpooling apps and share ride are widely used by IT employees in Bengaluru.
But it has been banned because as per state Transport Department guidelines, services such as cab aggregators Ola and Uber fall under the contract carriage permits, hence they cannot pick and drop passengers during the course of the ride as it is only for point-to-point pick up and drop.
Only vehicles with a stage carriage permit, such as public buses, are allowed to pick and drop passengers at multiple points....