No taxis for fourth day, Delhi commuters face a harrowing time

New Delhi, Feb 13 (IANS) Commuters had to face a harrowing time on as app-based taxis remained off roads in the national capital for the fourth day on Monday. People had to walk down to the nearest metro station or shell out inflated fares demanded by autorickshaws.

Alok Kaushik, a bank professional who travels from Noida sector 76 to Model Town, was unable to book a cab in the morning.

“I spent half an hour trying to book an Ola or Uber cab in the morning, but to no avail. Ultimately, I reached the nearest metro in an an auto-rickshaw by paying Rs 120 for a 4-km ride,” Kaushik said.

Abhishek Gupta, a marketing manager, had a similar story to tell.

“I had no cash on me today so I had to book an Ola cab. They accepted the booking, even shared the driver’s details. But at the last moment, the driver apologised and refused to come saying no taxis were plying today. Finally, I had to share an auto with five other people to get to the Noida City Centre metro station,” he said.

Komalika, a media professional who travels from East of Kailash in south Delhi to her office in Connaught Place, has been relying on auto-rickshaws for commute for the last few days.

“Today there were no cabs in the morning. So I got an auto, who refused to go by the metre and I had to shell out Rs 180. In app-based shared taxi, I usually pay Rs 60 for this distance,” she said.

Notwithstanding the call of strike given by taxi unions, some drivers tried to venture out but were reportedly stopped by others and their devices were snatched.

Meanwhile, cab aggregator Uber approached the Delhi High Court which on Monday directed the taxi unions to not hamper or stop the drivers who wanted to work, and to not create nuisnace near the offices of Uber.

“We welcome this court order, which prohibits unions, their leaders and anybody else from obstructing the activities of Uber driver partners as they go about their business. We hope it will enable drivers to get back behind the wheel, something many have been telling us they wish to do. We are sorry that our service has been disrupted and for any inconvenience this has caused,” Uber said in a statement.

Uber said that “a small group of people” was disrupting the Uber service in “parts of Delhi, and there were reports of threats and intimidation”.

The drivers have been demanding better perks, relaxed hours and accident insurance among other things.

–IANS

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