On April 2, the black and yellow taxi drivers around the city will not only drive, but will also keep a watch on suspicious looking people near Wankhede stadium.
The taxi union has asked its drivers to keep a tight watch on people and passengers at Churchgate and nearby locations during the finale of the 2011 Cricket World Cup.
This is being done after the police asked the taxi union to help them maintain a tight vigil at the stadium and areas such as Churchgate station and Marine Drive. “We have been asked by the police to keep a watchful eye. It will be a tough job to oversee so many of them,” said a member of the Mumbai Taximen’s Union on condition of anonymity.
Of the total fleet of around 36,000 taxis on road, nearly 30% drive office goers from Churchgate to business hubs like Nariman Point, Mantralaya, Colaba and Fort. This request has been made in the backdrop of reports claiming that some terrorist elements may sneak into the city. The taxi union also asked drivers to avoid halting their vehicles near the stadium for long.
“Restrictions on traffic near the stadium are expected. Presently it will be difficult to speak on our exact course of action on April 2,” said AL Quadros, general secretary, Mumbai Taximen’s Union.
Meanwhile the residents staying at Churchgate, especially on roads A, B C and D, have been given one identity card per family, which they are expected to carry until Saturday night. “We have been asked not to park our vehicles on the road from 6pm on Friday till 11pm on Saturday once the match is over,” said a member of Marine Drive Residents Association.
There are around 75 buildings in the vicinity.