As the debacle between Ola–Uber drivers entered the twelfth day, the Delhi Government has finally intervened in the matter. It has reportedly called a meeting of the protesting cab drivers and representatives of both cab aggregators on Thursday.
This comes after the drivers staged a protest outside the residence of Transport Minister Satyendra Jain.
However, the government has clearly stated that it has no intention of acting like a ‘mediator’ between the two parties. A senior government official said, “The Government cannot force both app-based aggregators to accept all demands. We will just provide a platform between both companies and drivers where the latter would be able to raise their issues.”
Earlier this month on February 10, 2017, the Sarvodaya Driver Association of Delhi had called for a strike. Six taxi-driver associations were a part of this strike. As per reports, five of the taxi associations withdrew from the protests after Monday, February 13, 2017.
The drivers were demanding better perks, accident insurance, to be paid as per government sanctioned fare i.e. INR 21/km, among other things.
However, the protests soon turned violent. Reports surfaced that violent protestors were vandalising the vehicles on the road and removing the Ola/Uber devices from the cabs.
Following which, the Delhi High Court passed an order strongly condemning the violent ways of protesters in the city.
At the same time, the Delhi Transport Minister Satyendra Kumar Jain asked the city Police to crackdown on violent protesters. While commenting on the measures taken by the government to control the situation, he said: “On reports of driver violence and damage to property I would urge the police to take strict and stern measures. This violence and vandalism on the roads cannot continue. Unless action is taken, it’s almost like the vandalism is being allowed. No one can be given an opportunity to take the law in their hands. Those who want to protest should then stay home. How can they be roaming on the streets and vandalising cars?”
Following this assurance, the availability of Uber and Ola cabs increased in Delhi-NCR as the strike seemed to be fizzling out. On Sunday, both cab aggregators floated the message that they were back in full capacity. However, there was no information about a settlement between both the parties.