BENGALURU: Members of autorickshaw unions staged protest march near Majestic Railway Station on Monday demanding a ban on bike taxi services, which, they said, is unauthorised. Later, the police detained the protesters as they had planned to gherao the Chief Minister’s residence.
The drivers claimed that they do not get business due to the unauthorised bike taxi services in the city. The protesters shouted slogans and waved black flags during the protest and even clashed with the police.
Autorickshaw driver Rishi Karle said, “This is our land and being Kannadiga, I should work here. People from other states are working with unauthorised bike taxi services in the city. I cannot go to another state looking for employment”.
Autorickshaw drivers’ union leader Raghu said, “We have been making requests to the present BJP government since the time it came to power to ban the illegal bike taxis. We should get justice”.
Raghu also warned Transport Minister B Sriramulu that their demands should be fulfilled before he enters the city. “We had been through difficult days during pandemic period. It is again proved that this is a 40 per cent commission government. The Chief Minister should think about our problems and find a solution. We will fight till we win or die. We will not leave this place until the CM comes here and gives a written assurance. The government is supporting private aggregators. If we don’t get justice, all drivers will boycott the election”.
Raghu claimed that the illegal bike taxi services were taking away their earnings. “This is a plan to take away our jobs also”, he alleged.
Another autorickshaw driver, Javed Ahmed, said this is just beginning. “Over 2.50 lakh autorickshaw drivers will will go on protest in the coming days. The government did not respond to the union’s request. We will definitely defeat the BJP government, we will not sleep until it is defeated in the election”.