App-based autorickshaw drivers stop accepting rides fearing Rs 5,000 fine

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App-based cab companies are still operating service

BENGALURU: After the strict warning by the Transport Department of action against app-based aggregators as well as hefty fines, autorickshaw drivers on the Ola and Uber platforms are voluntarily coming out of the app and welcoming the Transport Department’s decision. Many of them have switched off the app over fears of being fined.

App-based auto drivers are getting request for bookings on Wednesday, but are rejecting them.

Autorickshaws drivers, who are on-boarded on the aggregator apps, fear that they are liable to pay a fine of Rs 5,000 from today in the city and are either signing off the apps or rejecting rides.

“We have not accepted any requests for rides today, as the Transport Department has warned of collecting fines. App-based cab aggregators are still operating and providing service. We are not getting any profits from the company, but passengers are facing the burden of excessive fares. If the government launches an app, we are all ready to adopt it. Commuters won’t have any problem paying in fixed fare,” they felt.

The Transport Department is expected to conduct a check on the ground to see if the aggregators are still providing autorickshaw services. The department is firm that Ola, Uber and Rapido cannot resume autorickshaw services until the aggregators obtain the requisite licence. The public have also been asked to lodge a complaint if they see app-based autorickshaws operating through the app.

Even as commuters are finding it difficult to hail autos through the apps, it is unclear how Ola, Uber and Rapido will react to the Transport Department’s decision.

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