This weekend, more than 300 volunteers will take to the city’s streets and distribute pamphlets and posters spreading awareness about the second Meter Jam campaign to be held on October 12.
The campaign, which involves citizens boycotting cabs and autos for refusing fares, had got more than 40,000 supporters on social networking website Facebook after it was first launched in August this year.
This time, however, the organisers have brought together area representatives to help them reach out to a larger
number of people, many of whom may not have access to the internet.
Abhilash Krishnan, Jaidev Rupani and Rachana Brar, the three advertising professionals who started Meter Jam, have selected 20 zonal representatives from over 200 applicants last month. Each of these representatives will co-ordinate with at least 25 volunteers under them. “This time, we want the common man to take note of Meter Jam. The volunteers have been a big help with the groundwork,” said Krishnan. “We have volunteers covering most of the suburbs, but not enough in south Mumbai.”
Most volunteers are young working professionals or college students, who are eager to contribute to the cause, especially after the first Meter Jam received a lukewarm response.
“I get refused by cab drivers every day. And, in the past two months, I have come across just one cab driver who had the correct meter card,” said Jishna Joshi, a human resource professional and the campaign’s zonal representative in Andheri.
Joshi is in constant touch with other area volunteers, and her own team plans to distribute 5,000 pamphlets over the weekend. “We are also talking to people from housing societies, but we never force people to join,” added Joshi, who is a resident of Vasai.
Meanwhile, the organising team is also receiving help from various corporates for the campaign, which will be held simultaneously in Mumbai and Bangalore on Tuesday. While myntra.com is printing black Meter Jam t-shirts for sale at Rs 399, carpooling forum vRideAlong.com has teamed up with the campaign to facilitate shared private transport.
“Last time, people were afraid to carpool with strangers, but we hope it works this time since there will be more professional security checks,” said Brar.
Meter Jam has also tied up with mobile campaign managers ZipDial.com, through which they can send mass update SMSes to anyone who register their numbers as a Jammers.