Cabbies on strike, Uber office windows smashed

Cabbies on strike, Uber office windows smashed
A large number of drivers of cab aggregators Ola and Uber on Wednesday struck work and came on to the streets protesting against their employers and the transport department.

While a few drivers in the garb of union members in several parts of the city were found stopping cabs and forcing passengers to alight from vehicles after warning drivers not to work, a few others resorted to flash protests near Hebbal, obstructing traffic for a while. A few of them even smashed glass panes of the Uber corporate office in HSR Layout on Wednesday afternoon.

Police resorted to mild caning to disperse the crowd after which they registered a case against drivers and those who vandalised properties.  Cases were registered at HSR Layout, Sampigehalli and Amruthahalli police stations, a senior police officer told DH.

‘Nothing fruitful’

“The companies (Ola and Uber) and the transport department are playing the fool. They diligently call all registered cluster heads on phones who turn up with their drivers for meetings. Despite two meetings last month and one this month, nothing fruitful has came out so far,” Ramesh Gowda, union member, Bengaluru Airport, KSTDC, Prepaid Taxi Drivers Association said.

They just listen to individual grievances and the core issue and our demands are not addressed, he added.

“All we want is a pulse-rate meter that can be fixed to cars and a fare mechanism that is transparent for passengers, aggr egators and drivers. They cannot fix flat rates according to their whims and fancies using marketing strategies for attracting customers and having us running at a loss,” said Ramesh Gowda.

“We will continue our protest even on Thursday and days to come till we get a concrete solution,” said Raju, a driver.

Voice message

Tanvir Pasha, president of the Ola TaxiForSure and Uber drivers association in a voice message to all cabbies appealed to them not to log in to work saying the aggregator companies have failed to fulfil their demands.

Meanwhile, a majority of drivers who were not willing to stay off the roads expressed concern over frequent strikes by unions.

“How can we pay the EMI to clear the car loan and run the household?’’ one of the drivers attached to Uber asked, appealing to leaders not to force anyone to stay off the roads.
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