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Ready to jam meters?

mumbai Updated: Oct 12, 2010 02:10 IST
Aarefa Johari
Aarefa Johari
Hindustan Times
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Jasmine Gandhi, owner of a Mulund tour operating company, is all prepared to do more than her bit for the second Meter Jam campaign on Tuesday.
The campaign aims to boycott taxi and autorickshaw services for a day.

With the help of her family and friends, Gandhi has arranged for five private cars for anyone requiring carpool facilities in Bhandup, Mulund and Thane.

“We see a lot of people being denied autorickshaw rides outside our office every day, and this is our way of helping them,” said Gandhi, a zonal representative of Meter Jam in Mulund (West) who has already distributed 25,000 pamphlets informing the public about the campaign.

Advertising professionals Jaidev Rupani, Rachana Brar and Abhilash Krishnan started the Meter Jam campaign in August.

The first Meter Jam drive, held on August 12, had more than 40,000 supporters online.

For the second round on October 12, organisers have recruited more than 200 zonal and local volunteers across the city to help spread awareness about the movement among masses.

“We are urging people to use buses and trains to ride to work on Tuesday, and wear black to show their solidarity,” said Abhilash Krishnan, one of the three organisers of the campaign.

Since the previous Meter Jam attempt at organising carpools did not take off, they are now taking professional help from online carpooling forum, which uses mobile and email authenticity checks to ensure safety.

While Meter Jammers are ready to participate with enthusiasm and strong beliefs that they can bring about a change in the situation, taxi and auto union leaders are unfazed.

“Taxis cannot run for 24 hours and refusals happen all over the world,” said AL Quadros, president of the Bombay Taximen’s Association. “The protest can grow bigger, but it will still not affect our business.”