BENGALURU: The Transport Department is all set to crack the whip on online taxi aggregators in the city as they were flouting rules.
During the enforcement drive carried out on January 7, the road transport officials (RTO) seized around 70 taxis registered with online aggregators for overcharging, not having valid meters and not giving printed receipts to the passengers.
Joint Commissioner (Transport) Narendra Holkar said, “We have issued repeated warnings to the cab drivers that to ply as a taxi on city roads, they will have to follow the city taxi norms. We started crackdown on these taxis only after complaints were received from aggrieved passengers.”
Earlier, the RTO officials raided the ZipGo office, a service started by Ola. The office was raided as ZipGo was found violating contract carrier norms and the transport department is mulling to cancel the permit of this transport service, he added.
Transport Commissioner Rame Gowda said, “The Central government has given the discretion to all the state transport departments to come up with their own rules to manage online taxi aggregators. We have already formulated a draft notification and currently it is with the law department for a final review. Once it is cleared, we will implement it within a week. Once the rules are in place it will be mandatory for all the taxi operators to follow them.”
According to the draft notification, taxi aggregators would be mandated to install digital meters in cars, stick to state-prescribed fares and have provisions for providing printed receipts to passengers.
It is seen as following the footsteps of the Maharashtra government which had proposed similar ‘restrictive’ rules for players.
The spokespersons of both Ola and Uber refused to comment on the issue. However, the official spokesperson for Uber said they would only follow the issue after the draft notification is implemented.
Transport expert M N Srihari said, “The state government should not vent its frustration against such players but should ensure a conducive environment to ensure healthy competition among service providers and the priority should be to give the passengers a choice.