redBus launches carpooling service, but Transport Dept. officials say it’s illegal

No provision in law for commercial use of private cars

June 13, 2019 10:57 am | Updated 10:57 am IST - Bengaluru

The Transport Department, which recently came down heavily on bike taxis, has warned against the use of private cars for commercial gain.

This comes after online bus ticketing platform, redBus, launched a carpooling service, rPool, in Bengaluru. People offering others rides in their private cars receive attractive incentives in the form of reward points that can be redeemed at fuel station or Amazon Pay, while riders can use the service by paying less than autorickshaws or cabs for the same distance, claims the platform.

The company said it will charge zero commission for the first five years and riders will be provided accident insurance for free for each ride.

Transport Department officials say there is no provision in the rules to allow such use of private cars. “We do not know what redBus is offering. If they are allowing their platform to run private cars for commercial purposes it is illegal. Carpooling is allowed in the city only when it is not commercial. In the past, some aggregators introduced ride-sharing apps. We carried out a drive to stop them as it was being done without any legal sanction. Cases were booked against car owners for violating norms,” officials said.

The city has more than 80 lakh vehicles out of which 15.41 lakh are private cars.

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