The registration of new cabs for Ola and Uber services in Maharashtra shall re-commence from today. This was conveyed by the state transport ministry to the Federation of Tourist Taxi Operators.
The Federation had complained on Friday that registration had been abruptly stopped by RTOs since April 1. They had registered a complaint with the state department regarding this and had also threatened to boycott poll duty if their demand was not met.
Harsh Kotak, vice president of the Federation, said that the moment the issue was highlighted by media, the association got a call from the state department informing them that the registration of news cabs shall commence from Monday. He said that the Federation was glad that the government has not stopped the entry of Ola and Uber cabs as these are in demand by the commuters.
The tourist cab operators had earlier alleged that the delay in registering new cabs (less than 1400 cc) was being deliberately done as aggregator cab population had jumped nearly jumped 97 percent in three years whereas other taxis numbers had dipped by 40 percent.
It may be noted the Mumbai district administration had also recently asked the regional transport office (RTO) to check the possibility of hiring app-based cabs for election duty.
These cabs will be essentially used to carry polling booth staff a day before the election day. Maharashtra will vote for Lok Sabha Elections 2019 in 4 Phases between April 11 to April 29. Mumbai constituencies are scheduled to vote on April 29.
As of now, RTO used to hire black-and-yellow cabs through unions to ferry the polling booth staffs. The administration is trying to tie up with Ola and Uber on a per-day basis.
An RTO estimation said that the city demands 20-25 per cent more vehicles for the duty in the 2019 election as compared to previous Lok Sabha poll.
The development was reported by TOI.