Noida: Ola, Uber cabbies to shut services today
Commuters from Noida and Ghaziabad found it difficult to book cabs towards Delhi. Commuters also said that within Uttar Pradesh, drivers from Noida did not accept duties for Ghaziabad and vice versa.noida Updated: Mar 22, 2018 23:18 IST
The strike by Ola and Uber drivers across Delhi-NCR on Thursday left many commuters inconvenienced. While some cabs were still available on Thursday, the drivers plan a complete shutdown on Friday.
Commuters from Noida and Ghaziabad found it difficult to book cabs towards Delhi. Commuters also said that within Uttar Pradesh, drivers from Noida did not accept duties for Ghaziabad and vice versa.
“I live in Ghaziabad and work in Noida. I regularly use shared cabs. On Thursday, Noida drivers said that they would not go to Ghaziabad as there is a strike there and asked me to cancel. I faced the same problem in Ghaziabad as drivers refused to go out of the city, to Noida or Delhi,” Namita Relan, an architect and Ghaziabad resident, said.
Pratiksha Singh, of Noida Sector 30, who uses cabs regularly, said that she took almost two hours to find a cab to go to Delhi. “Drivers would accept the duty and then call to ask the destination. They refused to pick me up when I said I had to go to North Campus in Delhi,” Singh said.
Commuters in Noida and Ghaziabad are worried about the availability of cabs on Friday.
Cab drivers said that while the strike has been going on for almost a week, many had continued to ferry commuters. While some stopped operations on Thursday, a complete shutdown is planned on Friday. The drivers and unions are demanding better compensation, better verification of riders and streamlining of shared duties.
“The app-based aggregators are running a business of selling cheaper vehicles at higher lease rates, leaving no profit for drivers. The commission they charge has been increasing while the fares have been reducing,” Kamaljit Singh, president, Sarvodaya driver association of Delhi, said.
Sanjay Samrat, the president of Delhi Taxi Tourist Transporters’ Association, said, “The cab fares are very low and we have to pay about 25% of these rates as commission. We want the government to fix uniform rates for all operators in Delhi-NCR, which are higher and acceptable to us. We will be on strike on Friday and have support from drivers across NCR as well as associations in Lucknow, Ahmedabad and other cities.”
Few cab drivers said that they were threatened by unions to stop running cabs and were warned that their vehicles would be damaged.
“It is better not to work for a day than getting the vehicle damaged and stopping work for several days, along with bearing the repair cost. We don’t really have a complaint but we have to cooperate with the unions,” a Noida-based driver said.
Some drivers said they will continue to ferry commuters who call them personally, without using the cab aggregator apps.
Meanwhile, aggregators informed that they have not received any demands from driver-partners and there was no disruption of services in Delhi-NCR.
“We have heard about the strike by driver partners in Delhi from media reports. As of now, it is business as usual for us in Delhi-NCR,” an Ola spokesperson said.
A spokesperson for Uber said, “There is no disruption to the service in Delhi-NCR, at this point. We are committed to serving the city, ensuring driver-partners can continue to access a stable income while giving riders a convenient, reliable option to get around Delhi-NCR.”
The cab aggregators said that Uber has over 4.5 lakh driver-partners across the country and Ola has about 9 lakh driver-partners in 110 cities.