TA few days ago, a friend who was visiting me in Gurgaon in Mumbai entered the restaurant with a rant. The cause of his anger was seven consecutive taxi drivers who canceled his reservation. She had to travel from Delhi to Gurgaon and most taxi drivers didn’t want to cross the state border.
Her anger was justified and as she sat down at the restaurant, she vowed to discuss it with the taxi aggregators.
However, like many of us, after dinner she forgot everything and life went on.
In the absence of good public transport systems in various states of India, one is forced to use the services of aggregator taxis like Ola, Uber, Meru, etc. We are often at the mercy of taxi drivers who decide whether or not to transport a passenger from point A to point B. These considerations are made on the basis of the distance and the payment method the passenger chooses.
For Vijay Gopal, an anti-corruption and consumer rights activist from Hyderabad, this subjectivity on the part of a common service provider was not acceptable.
The need for a change was very strong and even led him to file a public interest litigation to get the courts to step in and provide a redress mechanism for commuters harassed due to taxi drivers refusing a passenger a ride for arbitrary reasons.
Here is what you can do if a taxi driver refuses to make the trip or cancels for you:
1. When booking a ride through a taxi aggregator, be sure to note the taxi number. Preferably take a screenshot on your mobile.
2. If, after booking a ride, the taxi driver calls you and asks you for the final destination, share it with them.
3. If, after learning the final destination, the taxi driver cancels the trip or refuses to allow you to board – share the date, time, location with your city’s traffic police on Twitter or via WhatsApp . You should also take a screenshot of the canceled trip to share with the traffic police.
4. Trip cancellation results in a penalty of Rs 500 for state-run buses and Rs 200 for private taxis, which the state police lift directly from the vehicle, u / s 178 (3) (a) of the Motor Vehicle Act, 1988
Vijay says: âThe problem here is multiple and you have to solve them all. If a taxi driver has made about 20 trips in a day, the money is not credited to him immediately and this puts the taxi driver in a difficult position. Therefore, when a customer says the payment method is digital, the taxi driver cancels the trip to avoid the delay in receiving payment.
He goes on to say that while aggregators can settle the amount at the end of each day, it will help reduce the number of trips canceled daily.
âA law that requires aggregators to pay taxi drivers within a specified time will go a long way in solving this problem of trip cancellations,â Vijay said. It also explains that the rules for commercial vehicle permits state that the permit holder must not deny a passenger a ride for any reason while on duty.
Vijay’s anguish over such race cancellations comes from a very personal experience. While recovering from an accident in which he suffered a serious foot injury and had difficulty walking, he had already had to wait more than 40 minutes, stuck waiting for a taxi, while several drivers continued to walk. cancel his trip. “My anger does not go away without fixing the situation and that is exactly why I am fighting for this cause,” he concludes.
(Edited by Vinayak Hegde)