Mumbai’s auto and taxi business has been severely affected because of the ongoing crunch of bank notes of lower denominations.
Drivers of black and yellow taxis, three-wheelers, fleet and cool cabs complained about a drop in their business as people avoid travelling with them now. This is mostly because of the unavailability of sufficient cabs. Besides, the long weekend also contributed to it and some drivers chose to remain off the road.
“At least 50% of our overall business has reduced in the past two to three days. It could be because of the long weekend and also the unavailability of sufficient bank notes, due to which some drivers chose to remain off the road. Besides fewer people are taking the road now,” said AL Quadros, general secretary of Mumbai Taximen’s union.
Even fleet cab services complained about reduced business. “There has been some impact. However, since our billing system is well integrated with Paytm, Freecharge, Mobiquick and Citrus, it is getting normal,” said Siddhartha Pahwa, group chief executive officer (CEO) of MERU, Mumbai.
On other hand, metered autorickshaws have been badly affected with the drop in change. “Most of the transaction in auto happens in cash like paying EMI, insurance or buying spare parts. At least 20% of drivers are remaining off the road due to unavailability of cash. The share-a-rickshaw business is slightly better, however there has been an overall impact,” said Shashank Rao, leader of Mumbai Autorickshawmen’s Union.