The transport department appears to have gone soft on taxi aggregators in the City as it is taking no action against cabs run by these firms. The department had banned taxi aggregators last month after a driver of an Uber cab was accused of raping a woman in Delhi.
The Union government had issued an advisory to states to ban taxi services by aggregators. In Bengaluru, the transport department had raided the offices of Uber, TaxiForSure and some other aggregators and found them to be operating illegally. The firms were not following the 25 conditions under the city taxi scheme. The department then asked them to stop the services until they registered with it and obtained a licence.
Now after the initial crackdown, the department appears to be going slow, rendering the ban on these taxis largely ineffective.
But in cities like Delhi, the same aggregators are taking pains to register themselves with the respective department as the ban has been imposed strictly there.
Transport Commissioner Ramegowda, however, insisted that the department was not going soft on the aggregators. “We are not going soft on them. We have been framing the guidelines and have sent a proposal in this regard. For us, customers’ safety is of utmost importance. Besides, we didn’t want to be too harsh on the aggregators as many people hire these cabs and we didn’t want the public to sympathise with them.”
More recently, the cab aggregators have started demanding changes in the existing city taxis rules, which are more suitable and tailor-made for their services. Most of them argue that since they are only technology providers, they cannot be treated like taxi operators. Hence, the scheme must be amended so they can register, they say.