Mumbaikars faced an agonizing day as almost million of commuters were stranded as auto-rickshaws and taxis drivers attached with ‘Swabhiman Union’ went on a day-long strike till 5 PM in the evening. The reason behind the ban is agitation against app based cabs. The Union had sent a letter to Maharashtra transport commissioner with a copy to state transport minister Diwakar Raote and CM Devendra Fadnavis on June 9 demanding a ban to imposed on Uber, Ola, Meru etc.
The union claims that it has 18000 autos and 12000 taxis as its members.
KK Tiwari, Mumbai President on Swabhiman Union said,” the strike is only an alarm to the state government and if our demands are not met, then the union would be forced to launch an intensive agitation.” He further added that the union has got support from rickshaw and taxi owners who are not a part of the union.
The largest union of taxi owners in the city led by AL Quadros has not supported this strike. The largest auto union in the city led by Shashank Rao has said it will go on a strike from June 17.
Given these strikes, it is apparent that app based cabs have been a hit among consumers who are now looking up to these cabs which are booked as per their convenience without any hassles about fare. Not only this, the traditional taxis usually ply on the discretion of drivers whereas app based cabs provides a cab for certain. Not only this, cashback, offers and other lucrative deals is a hit among smartphone owning generation. Talking about safety, companies have added SOS button, ride tracking features for making commute less worrisome.
The choice of commute should all be on consumer’s preference and not on coercion as these unions often exploit them instead of providing service.