Bengaluru Transport Department launches crackdown on illegal Bike taxis

The federation has threatened to call for a bandh if the state transport department fails to fulfil the promises it made, which includes banning of bike taxis, e-bike taxis and white board taxis.
Private transport operators protest outside the office of the Commissioner for Transport and Road Safety in Bengaluru on Thursday.
Private transport operators protest outside the office of the Commissioner for Transport and Road Safety in Bengaluru on Thursday.Photo | Allen Egenuse J

BENGALURU: After the Federation of Karnataka State Private Transport Associations’ protest on Thursday, the state transport department has formed a team to crack down on bike taxis operating in Bengaluru from Friday onwards. The department has formed 11 teams across RTOs in the city.

The federation has threatened to call for a bandh if the state transport department fails to fulfil the promises it made, which includes banning of bike taxis, e-bike taxis and white board taxis. Last September, more than 32 auto, cab, private bus and school bus associations protested and observed a Bengaluru bandh, and withdrew their protest after the state government agreed to fulfil a majority of their demands.

A protest broke out on Thursday afternoon when federation members tried to meet Transport Commissioner Yogesh at the Shanthinagar office, urging him to enforce the promises the department had made. Police stopped the members at the building entrance. Hundreds of auto and cab drivers sat in protest outside the office and shouted slogans against the transport department. After some time, the members were allowed to met the transport commissioner and hand over a memorandum.

Nataraj Sharma, nominated president of the federation, told TNIE, “There is no provision to operate bike taxis in the state. The state government, which came up with a policy to allow operation of e-bike taxis, withdrew it early this year citing security concerns. Despite this, we see hundreds of white board vehicles linked to private companies like Rapido, operating illegally.”

We urged the transport department to take action against illegal bike taxis, and 11 teams have been set up across the city to crack down on e-bike taxis and other bike taxis operating illegally from Friday, Sharma added.

Other demands of the federation include implementing ‘one city, one fare’ order, issuing permits to school cabs, vans and buses, ensuring that private cab aggregators charge only 5 per cent commission, and price regulation of the vehicle tracking and location device. Federation members said the transport commissioner has promised to fulfil all their demands within a week.

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