Meru Cabs accused of running low-cost service illegally

Meru Cabs accused of running low-cost service illegally

Meru Cabs accused of running low-cost service illegally

Transport officials conducted a surprise check on Meru Cabs’ office in Marathahalli on Monday evening, as part of an ongoing crackdown on illegal cab operators in Bengaluru.

Officials said they found that ‘Meru Genie Cabs’, the company’s low-cost service, was being run illegally under Meru Cabs. They have now decided to confiscate the vehicles being run under the brand name ‘Meru Genie Cabs’.

Officials also found that many vehicles didn’t have proper documentation. But since Meru Cabs has the licence to operate and is registered with the Transport Department, it has been given time to produce the necessary documents.

“Many vehicles didn’t have fitness certificates, emission certificates and other required documents. But since the company is registered with us, we have given it time till tomorrow (Tuesday) to show the documents,” a senior transport official said.

The firm, however, didn’t provide any information on the operation of ‘Meru Genie Cabs’ in the City. “They told us that the service is managed out of Mumbai and that there were no documents or representatives here in Bengaluru. They asked us for a week’s time, but our opinion is that without a licence, they cannot operate in the City. Hence, we have decided to confiscate the vehicles from Tuesday onwards,” the official added.

‘Meru Genie Cabs’ operates from within the Meru Cabs and offers fares lower than the standard Meru rates. Even coupons used for discounts in Meru Genie Cabs have the same promo code: Meru150.

A statement issued by the Transport Department said that out of the 1,053 cabs owned by Meru in Bengaluru, 701 were operational on road. “There were many complaints from commuters and the public against this company for charging extra charges and additional surcharge from the customers (sic). Legal action will be initiated by the department against Meru Genie company,” the statement read.

But Siddharth Pahwa, the CEO of Meru Cabs Company Pvt Ltd, termed the search a routine inspection. “Meru has shown all the documents. The authorities were satisfied and we will submit all documents tomorrow,” he said in a message, agreeing that the company wanted all illegal services to be closed down.

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