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Ola fails to renew licence, cab drivers penalised

RTO officials have temporarily seized the vehicles of hundreds of cab drivers and fined them Rs 5,000 each
Last Updated : 31 July 2021, 12:31 IST
Last Updated : 31 July 2021, 12:31 IST
Last Updated : 31 July 2021, 12:31 IST
Last Updated : 31 July 2021, 12:31 IST

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Complaining that cab aggregator Ola has failed to renew its licence that expired in June, RTO officials have temporarily seized the vehicles of hundreds of cab drivers and fined them Rs 5,000 each.

Over the last one week, officials of the Regional Transport Office (RTO) have been rounding up taxis plying under the Ola platform and imposing penalties. Some even visited Ola’s office asking to explain why they are operating without a licence.

Additional Commissioner of Transport (Enforcement) L Narendra Holkar said the aggregator licence of ANI Technologies Pvt Limited, which runs Ola, expired in the end of June.

“Cases have been filed and penalties have been levied on taxis which operated after the expiry of licence. We told the company not to operate in the state until the licence is renewed,” he said.

We have till Sept 30: Ola

For their part, Ola cited a June 17 communication from the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways extending the validity of documents necessary to drive vehicles under the Motor Vehicle Act and MV Rules till September 30. “Ola has also applied for licence earlier this month (July),” a company source said.

Holkar dismissed the company’s claim saying the validity extension was limited to motor vehicle documents like permits and driving licences.

“It doesn’t apply to a company that is operating in the state with a licence under the aggregator rules,” he added.

Tanveer Pasha, president of Ola, TaxiForSure and Uber Drivers and Owners Association, questioned the penalty on cab drivers for the company’s mistake.

“If the Transport Department doesn’t want us to operate under Ola, officials should announce it,” Pasha said. “Instead, drivers are being harassed in the name of a licence about which they have no idea.”

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Published 29 July 2021, 19:39 IST

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