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Cab services unaffected on Monday, drivers plan strike on Friday

Citing low pay, the drivers of Ola and Uber had planned a nationwide strike on Monday

gurgaon Updated: Mar 20, 2018 16:36 IST
Kartik Kumar
Kartik Kumar
Hindustan Times
The protest by OLA and Uber cab drivers had a marginal effect on service in city on Monday. Commuters reported a slight surge in rate a longer waiting time. (Parveen Kumar/HT)

Gurgaon The nationwide protest by OLA and Uber cab drivers over low wages had marginal impact on the aggregator cab services in the city, with commuters reporting a slight increase in prices and longer waiting time on Monday.

Citing low pay, the drivers associated with aggregator cab services had threatened to take their vehicles off the roads across the National Capital Region (NCR) from Monday.

However, citing ‘short notice’, drivers owing allegiance to Sarvodaya Drivers’ Association, the main cab drivers’ union in the NCR, said they couldn’t enlist proper participation in the protest on Monday, but threatened to launch a ‘full scale’ protest on Friday.

“Although a few (cab) drivers (owing allegiance to the union), took their vehicles off the roads on today, we weren’t able to pool our resources in time to participate in the protest. However, we are making arrangements for a full-scale protest in demand of higher wages on Friday,” Kamaljeet Singh Gill, president, Sarvodaya Drivers’ Association, said.

Residents, who regularly rely on the cab service for commuting, said that they had to wait longer than usual for their cabs to arrive on Monday morning.

“I stay on Golf Course Road, which is home to a high number of residential societies and MNCs. On most days, it hardly takes five minutes to get an aggregator cab. However, today, I had to wait for 15 minutes for the cab nearest to my location to arrive,” Kartik Sharma, a resident of DLF-5, said.

Read I Gurgaon: Six days into strike, cabbies vexed over forgone income

Several other commuters, who fall back on the cab aggregators in the absence of adequate public transportation services in the city, also claimed inflated fares on Monday.

“I often book an aggregator cab to reach my office in CyberHub. However, while booking a cab today, I realised that the fares had been jacked up significantly. While on most days, the cab fare to my office is around ₹250, the same journey cost me ₹380 today,” Abhishek Dayal, a resident of Nirvana Country, said.

The city has been at the receiving end of several such protests by aggregator cab drivers in the recent past, leaving the commuters high and dry.

On April 17 and 18, 2017, drivers working for aggregators Uber and Ola took their vehicles off the streets in protest against increased road tax in Haryana.

In February 2017, cab services were severely affected in the light of a series of protests by aggregator cab drivers demanding higher wages and life insurance.

Apart from NCR, the aggregator cabbies in Mumbai, Ahmedabad, Bangalore and Pune had also threatened similar protests. A cab strike, led by drivers affiliated to the Maharashtra Navnirman Vahtuk Sena, crippled services in Mumbai on Monday.

Uber and Ola officials declined to comment on the cab strike.

First Published: Mar 19, 2018 22:27 IST