The government has been making it difficult for the taxi-hailing service providers to operate smoothly in the country. Earlier, govt. had termed app-based taxi service providers as illegal. So, Ola has again spear-headed the licencing procedure and has now applied for a city taxi license in New Delhi(after Karnataka, in case you didn’t know).
As per the report from Economic Times, the company applied for the new license on 1st June. The report also says that the company has applied for the license under a new name — Ola Fleet. Typically, such type of license takes around 30 to 40 days to get issued.
In August 2015, Delhi government introduced the city taxi scheme, which also allowed mobile app-based taxi aggregators to come under the legal framework and register themselves for continuing operations in the national capital.
However, one licence-holder cannot register more than 2,500 cars and needs to follow conditions such as installation of GPS devices, taxi meters and fare regulation. The companies, which are operating over 2,500 cabs can apply for additional licences through new subsidiaries.
The new scheme also required that every taxi is a motor cab with a valid certificate issued by the transport department, is driven on clean fuel such as CNG, has an engine capacity of 600 cc and above and a seating capacity not exceeding seven, including the driver.
While Ola is ensuring that it stays on the right side of the legal system, Uber, on the other hand, has challenged the new regulations in the high court and so it has not even applied for the license.
It is known that Uber has been fighting against the new government guidelines, including the ones imposed on cab aggregators in Karnataka. But, the report from ET suggest that along with Uber, Ola has now also reached out to state governments to lobby for better regulations.
Since last few months, both companies were facing trouble from Karnataka government with various new regulations and guidelines. However, Ola got a license to operate as an “on-demand transportation aggregator” in Bangalore, while Uber’s application was rejected, citing incomplete paperwork.
The cab hailing service providers have been under the radar since the incident of December 2014, where an Uber driver had allegedly raped a women. Since then, some people have considered such services as unsafe and unregulated.
However, more and more people are still adopting this new on-demand taxi service. This has adversely affected the traditional means of transportation like auto-rickshaw and taxis in New Delhi. Thus, they went on strike last week, demanding action against such on-demand service providers.
A couple of days back, China gave green light to ride-hailing service providers. Previously, such services were operating under the grey area of its legal system.