Cab aggregator Uber has a track record of misfortunes in form of bans and molestation cases. Pulling forth the plight, few politically motivated groups have started assaulting Uber drivers in Maharashtra in order to put a halt on Uber’s aggregator services.
According to a company’s recent blog post –
Protesters have called for city-wide strikes and resorted to violence, holding our Uber Mumbai and Pune driver partners to ransom by assaulting drivers, damaging cars, and forcibly taking away company-owned equipment (mobile phones).
Following are the pictures sent by Uber Drivers:
These events have caused thousands of Uber drivers to stay off the roads, strandling the large number of commuters who rely on Uber for daily travel.
According to Uber, the group’s campaign is aimed at pressurising the government to pass laws that could have a damaging impact on the aggregator industry in Maharashtra, causing the loss of tens of thousands of jobs and earnings for drivers and reliable, safe and affordable transportation choices for the city.
The laws proposed to passed by the government-
A base price to be set on cab rides, so as to match the fares of radio taxis
To which, Uber says that the law will restrict freedom of consumer choice. Company validated its argument with the following points –
- Artificially created higher fares for riders;
- Decreased availability of efficient and on-demand transportation;
- Decreased jobs and earnings for drivers;
- Decreased reliability of getting safe and efficient transportation options in the Mumbai suburbs and neighbourhoods traditionally underserved by taxis.
Change in the criteria for issuing Public Service Vehicle badge
Proposed law states- driver must have lived in the state of Maharashtra for more than 15 year and should be able to read and write in Marathi.
Uber sees this as an adverse move against tens of thousands honest and hardworking drivers who will lose their livelihood because of this law and violate the right to equal opportunity for all citizens. Company also claims that these laws will make its services less reliable and more expensive as a result of shortage in supply of cars to meet the city’s demand.
“As we celebrate our 69th year of Independence, make your voices heard – innovation and progress is about making citizen-centric decisions by putting the interests of the larger community first”company states in the blog post.
The debate on cab aggregators’ operation has a lot of aspects and arguments to it, but if we talk of assaulting the drivers, this is not what our forefathers fought for.