Nearly two years after setting up parking spots and kiosks at Railway stations and pouring in close to Rs 100 crore each in them, both Uber and Ola seem to be having second thoughts on expanding this service.
Both cab aggregators are seen to be going slow in acquiring additional parking rights as they believe their return on investment has not been high, as per a report appearing in Business Standard.
The cab drivers also do not appear to very enthusiastic about parking their vehicles and wait for customers either. They are instead keen on staying mobile to find passengers.
This was considered to be a big business opportunity for Railways as well as cab hailing companies are given a large volume of passengers travelling by train. Around twenty million people travel by train every day on an average.
Railways had welcomed the services providing last mile connectivity to the passengers and had earned a revenue of Rs 20.93 crore through parking charges alone in the financial year ending March 31, 2019.
As per Railways contract, ‘app-based cab’ service providers have been given space for parking of 10 taxies at any given point of time.
In the last two years, Railways in many states including Karnataka, Jharkhand, Maharashtra, and Andhra Pradesh, among others, has allowed ride-hailing firms to park vehicles outside stations.
The ministry had outlined plans to provide designated parking spaces for ride-hailing firms in late 2017. Major ride-hailing firm Ola had signed MoUs with different railway zones to operate in designated stations. Uber also had struck a pact with Eastern Railways.