Within a fortnight, long-distance railway commuters arriving in the city will be able to hire a prepaid taxi from outside Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus, Lokmanya Tilak Terminus at Kurla and Dadar station.
The prepaid taxi service, similar to the one at the Mumbai airport, will enable passengers to make a fixed payment for the ride at the station depending on the distance.
“We will start the prepaid taxi services outside railway stations within 15 days,” confirmed Dilip Jadhav, state transport commissioner.
The transport department decided to run prepaid taxi services outside railway stations so that taxi drivers do not fleece passengers, especially those new to the city.
“There should be a proper fare chart on the kilometre travelled and estimated cost mentioned at the prepaid taxi counter. Only then it would be systematic,” said Ashok Datar, transport expert.
On December 25, the Hindustan Times had first reported about the meeting between officials of the transport department and Central Railway to start prepaid taxi services from railway stations.
The railways will allot a small area outside these three termini to set up counters where passengers can book a prepaid taxi.
“We have given the regional transport office (RTO) all clearances to set up the prepaid taxi stands,” said V Malegaonkar, chief public relations officer, Central Railway.
In the initial stages, there was an issue between the two agencies on their respective roles.
While Central Railway wanted the RTO to manage the prepaid taxi stands every day, the RTO complained of staff crunch and said it will only fix the fare.
In a related development, the state transport department will start prepaid autorickshaw services outside the city airport by June.