Cab strike dampens New Year spirit

Venting their ire: Protesting drivers stopped taxis at many locations in the city on Saturday.   | Photo Credit: special arrangement

Cab drivers’ strike robbed some of the city’s festive cheer on New Year Eve as denizens were forced to remain indoors on Saturday sans transport even as others paid a premium due to high demand for a few cars that operated.

Telangana Cabs Drivers and Owners Association called the strike on Friday after alleging that car aggregators Uber and Ola had reneged on promises made to drivers when they were hired.

The association also alleged that drivers who sought to make representations to Ola were roughed up on Thursday, which prompted the strike.

“The strike was successful on Saturday. We will continue our protest as planned till January 4. We will also pull down misleading posters the companies have put up across the city,” said Shiva Vulkundakar, president of the association. He also claimed that aggregators launched special schemes with incentives to lure drivers to work on New Year eve and New Year day when the demand for cabs is expected to be high but drivers will continue their strike.

Those who ventured out in cabs and taxis were forcibly stopped by protesting drivers at many locations in the city. “We were travelling in a car with yellow number plate that was not operating as a taxi. We were stopped by drivers and asked to hand over our device. When we told the car was not being used as a taxi, we were allowed to go,” said K. Lingaswamy, who was stopped at L.B. Nagar.

Left disappointed

Others who set out to book cabs through apps were left disappointed as many could not find cars.

“After waiting for more than two hours, we gave up finding a cab. No sooner a vehicle cropped up on the map, it would disappear,” said Rakesh Sethi, a resident of Sainikpuri, attesting to high demand for the few cabs that operated.

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Printable version | May 19, 2021 5:09:25 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Hyderabad/Cab-strike-dampens-New-Year-spirit/article16971847.ece

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