Bottlenecks on the road

Commuters' woes

Bottlenecks on the road

When taxi aggregators like Uber and Ola decided to provide car sharing facilities for passengers sometime back, it was received wholeheartedly. This sharing facility turning out to be illegal was a shock for commuters.

    The government has now granted permission for car pooling provided the passengers are picked up from and dropped off at the same destination. Commuters are closely watching these developments as it is a matter of utmost priority for them. 

Content writer Anupama Shivacharya, for instance, travels from Yelahanka to Koramangala every day. She says by hiring ‘OlaShare’, she has been paying only half the price of what she would pay for a regular cab. Now, she is left with a difficult choice. “Honestly, I have no idea how I am going to travel now. The share-service was very helpful as I was able to save much.”

According to the transport department, the taxi-aggregators have been operating the service illegally. The contracts of taxi services only allow them to pick up and drop the passenger from point A to point B. In order to add another pickup, the taxis are required to have a stage carriage permit, which is given by the State only to government-run buses.

Deepthi Nataraj, a professional, says that she is also worried about what to do next.
    “I read about this a couple of days ago and it is very disheartening to know that the share-services won’t be there. I recently purchased a monthly pass which required me to take the share-service for Rs 50 to Rs 70 for the first 12 km. I still have a few more rides left on the pass and I don’t know what will happen to it. There has been no response from the cab service providers about this either,” says Deepthi.

When one takes a share-service, one is often not aware  who the fellow passenger is and not many are comfortable about it. However, whenever Anupama has travelled, she has not had any unpleasant experiences. She explains, “There have been times when there would be a male passenger sharing the cab with me. But if my drop point is too far or if it is getting dark, I am usually dropped first.”

Professionals are also worried about the new proposal which says passengers will be picked up and dropped at a  single point. Bhandavya A R, an executive secretary, exclaims, “It’s not possible to go to a particular point every single time. The whole idea of a cab service is that you can be picked up and dropped as per your convenience. If we are asked to do otherwise, it’s just like taking a bus! Moreover, I can’t look for people who will want to travel to the same location as I do. This is quite ridiculous!”

Vidya Gurunath, a content writer, says, “It will be difficult for frequent commuters like me to adopt this rule as I am so used to hiring share taxis. Share-cabs are convenient and one of the most modes to commute in this traffic. However, I hope the government and the taxi aggregators will sort out a way to help passengers who need this service.”

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