National

Karnataka not to take action against cab aggregators for now

Krishnaprasad   Bengaluru | Updated on January 20, 2018

But surge pricing will result in government action

In a temporary relief to cab aggregators and their driver-partners, the Karnataka government on Wednesday gave an undertaking to the Karnataka High Court that it will not take any coercive action, such as seizure of cabs, based on the recently introduced Karnataka On-demand Transportation Technology Aggregators Rules, 2016.

However, the State government said it would take action if the cab aggregators indulge in surge pricing.

Additional Advocate General AS Ponnanna told the court that the government is open to a discussion with cab aggregators and make changes if necessary.

Meanwhile, the court directed the government not to insist, at least for now, on police verification certificates for the driver-partners.

Under the new rules for operating aggregator services through On-Demand Transportation Technology Platforms (ODTTP), these certificates are needed to seek operating licences.

Justice Aravind Kumar passed the interim order after preliminary hearing on the petitions filed by private cab aggregator Uber; Helion Technologies Ltd, which plans to start a cab-aggregator service; and Satish, a private taxi operator.

Discussion

Asking the cab aggregators to submit their views on the new rules, the Court directed the government to discuss with them their grievances and submit the outcome before June 20, the next date of hearing.

Earlier, the counsel for Uber, Sajjan Poovayya, gave an undertaking to the court that the company has discontinued surge pricing.

He said Uber will continue to run its services without surge pricing until the court decides the legality of the rule.

Poovayya made this submission when the court expressed concern over surge pricing.

Verification

He told the court that even though the firm is not against police verification of driver-partners, the government cannot force them to seek verification reports at this juncture.

The counsel said the company is prepared to submit particulars of its driver-partners to the authorities concerned.

The government on April 2 had notified the rules under Section 93 of the Motor Vehicles Act imposing a series of conditions for ODTTP services, to ensure safety of passengers who use taxi services through aggregators.

Published on June 01, 2016

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