The Mumbai Taximen's Union has threatened to go on strike from May 2 if the state government doesn't set up a new taxi trade committee by the end of the month.
The union wants a new taxi trade committee to review the taxi fare hike formula. This decision was announced in a meeting on Sunday morning at Dongri where more than 1,000 taxi drivers were present.
"If the transport authorities fail to appoint a new taxi trade committee, all taxis in the city will go on indefinite strike from May 2," said AL Quadros, general secretary, Mumbai Taximen's Union.
Currently, there are around 40,000 taxis in the city, including 3,500 air-conditioned cool cabs.
"The Re1 fare declared by the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Transport Authority (MMRTA) in March is insufficient," said Quadros.
Earlier last month, the MMRTA had revised the minimum fare from Rs16 to Rs17 and 50 paisa for each subsequent kilometre. The revised fare was implemented from March 19.
The union is demanding a minimum fare of Rs20.
Apart from the trade committee, the union wants the transport department and traffic police to restart the taxi stands in the city that were shut down due to road work and other projects. "Around 1,200 taxi stands in the city now exist only on paper," said Quadros.
Also, they want the transport department not to insist on permanent addresses of taxi drivers while issuing the driving licence.
"Most drivers have shifted to places such as Virar, Meera Road, Nalasopara and Thane as they can't afford living in the city. The government should consider their temporary addresses," said Quadros.