App-based cab company challenges entry fee at IGIA

Updated - April 13, 2016 05:33 am IST

Published - April 13, 2016 12:00 am IST - NEW DELHI:

An app-based cab company has challenged the entry fee of Rs.150 imposed on commercial vehicles at Indira Gandhi International Airport (IGIA), while alleging that some taxi operators were allowed to enter and pick up passengers without paying any fee. This privilege was denied to others, said the cab firm in the Delhi High Court.

In its writ petition filed in the High Court, app-based cab firm Magic Sewa alleged that the Airport Authority of India (AAI) and Delhi International Airport Limited (DIAL) were giving preferential treatment to three taxi operators — Easy Cabs, Meru and Mega Taxi — and denying the privilege to others.

A Division Bench, comprising Chief Justice G. Rohini and Justice Jayant Nath, issued notices last week to AAI and DIAL and asked them to file their replies in two weeks before the Single Judge who is hearing the plea of Magic Sewa. With this direction, the Bench disposed of the cab company’s appeal against the Single Judge’s decision not to grant any interim relief in the case.

The court also advanced the next date of hearing in the matter before the Single Judge from July 22 to May 17. The Single Judge had on February 24 declined to grant interim relief to Magic Sewa, which had sought stay on the Rs.150 entry fee.

Raising the issue of exclusivity granted to the three cab companies by allowing their taxis to enter the airport and pick up passengers, the petitioner said the privilege was extended to them because they had paid huge amounts of money for it.

The AAI counsel said during the hearing before the Division Bench that the authority had floated tenders for grant of special privilege and the three cab companies were being charged huge amounts for entry into the airport.

Magic Sewa, on the other hand, contended that the grant of such special rights was against the interest of consumers and had killed competition, as the cab operators were passing the cost incurred by them on to the domestic and international passengers in one form or the other.

Moreover, the privileged cab companies were charging from passengers the maximum fare notified by the Delhi government under the law, which at present stood at Rs.23 per km, said the petitioner, while challenging the grant of special rights to select companies to the exclusion of others.

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