Even though Ola and Uber cabs claimed to be back in business with almost full strength of their fleet in Delhi, commuters on Tuesday complained of having to shell out more than usual for their daily rides.
The app-based cab aggregators resorted to surge pricing as a section of drivers once again went off the roads and took out a protest march from Majnu Ka Tila in North Delhi. The march, led by Sarvodaya Drivers Association of Delhi (SDAD) which has also led the ongoing strike against the cab companies, culminated at transport minister Satyendar Jain’s office.
Addressing the protesters, Kamaljeet Gill, president of the union told HT that they plan to gherao the minister in order to seek his intervention in the matter. However, the police restrained their movement and stopped them at Gurdwara Majnu ka Tila.
Jain told reporters that the demands of the cab drivers were unfair. “We have done whatever we could within our power. We acted as a mediator between the companies and the drivers, and both parties seem to have worked out a solution which is why more cabs are on the roads today,” Jain said.
He said the drivers are demanding that the per kilometre rate be increased to Rs 23. “How is that possible? We also have to see the public is not incovenienced,” he added.
The protest march led to jams in the area. A few took to Twitter to narrate their experiences.
“Nuisance is being created by Ola&Uber cab drivers @MajnuKaTila strike!Need2go2NigamBodh Ghat for my grandmothers cremation @dtptraffic,” Prateek Jain tweeted.
For the past 11 days, thousands of Uber and Ola drivers have been demanding better benefits, accident insurance, relaxation in working hours, higher pay and a reduction in the per kilometre rate, which is currently Rs 6 – far less than autorickshaws and government prescribed rates for AC and Non-AC radio taxis.
Another user complained about surge pricing and tweeted, “Ola and Uber are back in service but it seems they’re back with a vengeance.Crazy surge on share & pool.”