Auto, taxi strike called off, fare revision likely

A revision of the minimum fares of autorickshaws and taxis appears to be on the cards.

The Justice M. Ramachandran committee will be tasked with examining the demands for a fare hike, Transport Minister Antony Raju said on Wednesday after holding talks with the Motor Thozhilali Samyuktha Samara Samithi (action council of trade unions).

The committee would submit its report in one month and a decision would be finalised on the basis of its findings and a follow-up meeting with the trade unions, he said.

Following talks with the Minister, the action council called off the 24-hour strike planned on Thursday. According to it, the Minister termed the demand reasonable given the increase in the prices of petrol, diesel, spare parts and insurance premium.

Auto and taxi fares were last revised in December 2018. At present, the minimum fare of autorickshaws is ₹25 for 1.5 km. The minimum fare of non-AC taxis stands at ₹175 for the first 15 km and for AC taxis ₹200 for the same distance.

Responding to a demand made by the taxi unions, the Minister promised stern action against illegal taxis. The legal aspects of cancelling the driving licence and RC book of such operators would be examined, he said.

The activities of the Transport Advisory Committee would be strengthened to deal with regional disputes related to e-autos, according to the Minister. Mr. Raju said that testing centres for CNG vehicles would be started in Ernakulam and Thiruvananthapuram within six months.

According to the action council, the Minister agreed to recommend to the Centre to increase the mandatory period for scrapping old vehicles from 15 years to 20 years.

N. Unnikrishnan and Nalanchira Hari (CITU), V.R. Prathapan (INTUC), K. C. Jayapal and Pattom Sasidharan (AITUC), Maheen Aboobacker (STU), Gopan (UTUC), and Charupara Ravi (HMS) attended the meeting.

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Printable version | May 24, 2022 1:34:02 pm |