The Delhi government is likely to hold talks with representatives of drivers working with app-based cab aggregators Ola and Uber on Thursday in a bid to convince them to return to work as the strike entered the seventh day.
The meeting, however, does not guarantee the return of these cabs on the roads in Delhi and National Capital Region (NCR) as leaders of the drivers’ union have said their strike will continue until all their issues are resolved.
Hundreds of drivers are on an indefinite strike since February 10 in the Delhi-NCR region to protest against “low fares” and “lack” of basic amenities.
“Two representatives from Delhi government approached us and have fixed a meeting with government officials on all our demands tomorrow (Thursday),” Ravi Rathore, vice-president of Sarvodaya Driver Association of Delhi (SDAD), said.
SDAD claims to represent 1.5 lakh Ola and Uber drivers in Delhi-NCR.
Commuters found few cabs on Thursday morning and rates were high for those available even as Ola officials claimed that more and more drivers were getting back to work since Tuesday.
“We are happy to be able to serve more and more customers as the supply situation has begun to improve,” an Ola spokesperson said.
The Aam Aadmi Party government convened a meeting between representatives of Rajdhani Tourist Driver Union and managements of Ola and Uber on Wednesday. However, the meeting did not include anybody from the union leading the strike.
The striking drivers have not only affected hundreds of commuters over the past few days, they have also been harassing colleagues who have chosen not to be a part of the strike and are plying their cabs.
Many drivers who returned to work in Delhi have alleged that they were assaulted physically and their cars vandalised on Wednesday. However, no police complaints were made by any of these drivers.
On Wednesday, Delhi high court restrained anyone, including two taxi drivers’ unions, from interfering in the running of app-based cabs of Ola. A similar relief was granted by the high court to Uber two days ago against SDAD and Rajdhani Tourist Drivers’ Union.
In Ghaziabad, a cab was set ablaze by a group of unidentified protesters on Tuesday night, prompting the police to register a FIR.