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Mumbaiites won’t get respite from surge pricing by Ola, Uber anytime soon

The government-appointed four-member Khatua panel, which was to come up with a fare structure for all cabs and autorickshaws, failed to submit its report within the set deadline of August 31

mumbai Updated: Sep 05, 2017 00:40 IST
Kailash Korde
Kailash Korde
Hindustan Times
Mumbai,Ola,Uber
The panel, which is reviewing the taxi and autorickshaw fare fixation formula derived by government-appointed Hakim panel in 2012, will fix the upper and lower limit for surge pricing.(HT FILE)

You may not get respite from surge pricing – rise in prices when vehicles are in demand -- by app-based taxis, electric taxis and autorickshaws anytime soon.

The government-appointed four-member Khatua panel, which was to come up with a fare structure for all cabs and autorickshaws, failed to submit its report within the set deadline of August 31.

According to transport department sources, the committee, chaired by retired IAS officer BC Khatua, is likely to submit the report within 15 days.

Once the report is submitted, the government will take at least 2-3 months to decide the fares.

The panel, which is reviewing the taxi and autorickshaw fare fixation formula derived by government-appointed Hakim panel in 2012, will fix the upper and lower limit for surge pricing.

This is the third time Khatua panel has missed the deadline for submission of the report.

Earlier, it missed the June-end and July-end deadlines set by the state government and Bombay high court, respectively. After missing previous deadline, the panel had sought an extension of a month, which the government granted.

Maharashtra has around 7.5 lakh autorickshaws and 1.5-2 lakh taxis, including app-based taxis. Of these, more than 1 lakh taxis and 2.5 lakh autorickshaws ply in the Mumbai Metropolitan Region.

The delay has irked consumer activists. “The government wasted almost one-and-a-half year before appointing the Khatua panel. If the government had acted immediately after announcing appointment of the new committee, the report could have been out long ago. This would have given passengers much-needed relief,” said Varsha Raut, activist of Mumbai Grahak Panchyat, a consumer rights body.

Khatua did not respond to the query on the submission of report.

First Published: Sep 04, 2017 12:28 IST