If the transport department’s proposal goes according to plan, you could soon end up paying less for your daily commute from your home or office to the station. The department has proposed six-seater taxis for the point-to-point, share-a-taxi service in the city. These taxis will have two extra seats compared to the conventional black and yellow taxis and cool cabs.
Before going ahead with the proposal, the transport department said, it had to convince taxi unions, who had reservations about the scheme. The department has called for a joint meeting of taxi unions and car manufacturers, scheduled to take place next week.
Presently, there are more than 40,000 taxis on Mumbai’s roads and several of them ply on share-a-taxi routes. However, the demand for share-a-taxis has gone up after the fares of BEST buses, taxis and autos went up. For their daily commute, more and more people prefer to use the share-a- taxi service.
The proposal for the six-seater taxis, finally needs to be cleared by the State Transport Authority (STA). A source said because of the lack of sufficient time for discussion, the STA has postponed discussion on the proposal till the next meeting.
A senior official from the transport department said, “The six-seater taxis are expected to give commuters low-cost transport solutions.” Another official said that instead of four, taxi fare will now be divided among six passengers and therefore will prove beneficial to passengers travelling by in such taxis.
However, Nilesh Chavan, leader of Mumbai Taxi Chalak-Malak Sena, said, “The new scheme won’t be effective till new taxis stands are allotted for them.”
AL Quadros, leader of Mumbai Taximen’s Union said it would be difficult to get passengers on six-seater taxis on long routes.