When the two effects failed to stop the Uber’s pilot program, to protest against Uber, taxi drivers entered the streets of Montreal and started protesting against Uber and they demanded to meet their requirements.
The representatives of the taxi industry, said that, Uber, the mobile application based raid- hailing service, which bills the fares by itself has caused the taxi drivers to lose their revenue, because Uber fares are cheaper than the taxi fares. The existence of Uber has caused the taxi drivers investments to get lowered at a sudden rate. Uber drivers don’t purchase the taxi licenses, and it is not necessary for them to have such a license according to the new pilot program.
One of the executives said, they will take actions to meet the taxi drivers requirements, but there is there is no point in cancelling the pilot project.
About 1500 taxi drivers gathered in the streets of Montreal and started protesting against Uber and there was heavy traffic in the city. One of the taxi drivers said that, they have many expenses and they have to meet their expenses by driving a taxi, the drivers of Uber can use any cars and they need not pay anything for it, this act is unfair according to the taxi drivers.
The taxi driver briefs his expenses, the largest of all the expenses are in his car, he pays $515 weekly for the loan payment for his taxi license and annually he spends about $20,000 for the maintenance cost and the fuel charges, and at the end of the year he is left with $15,000, he says that, with that amount he can’t satisfy his complete needs.
The protest was initiated by the union of the city taxi drivers and by the group of owners of the taxi companies, but the major player of the industry didn’t participate in the protest.
Alexandre Taillefer, the person who is the owner of the city’s two largest cab companies didn’t participate in the protest, which was against Uber. Taillefer owns the electric cab company called Teo and he also owns two cab companies called, Diamond taxi and Hochelaga. These two taxi companies form about the 40% of the city’s taxi services.
The pilot program calls the Uber drivers to cancel the sales tax for each ride and to charge an extra fee starting at 90cents. The base rate for Uber will remain same as taxis that is $3.45
Taillefer has estimated the new fees of the Uber driver will be about $10,500 per year. The electric cab company Teo pays about $11,700 annually on each taxi license and it rents for the permit holders to $250 per week.
During the protest, the cabs kept on honking their horns and created the traffic, which lasted for more than two hours.
Taxi drivers protest in other parts of the world
In Indonesia, taxi drivers in Jakarta, protested against the app based raid-hailing services such as the Uber and Grab. The taxi drivers complained that these raid-hailing services made it difficult for them to lead a living in the highly congested city like Jakarta.
Some of the protesters started attacking the other drivers who didn’t take part in the protest.
The raid-hailing services, Uber and Grab started creating confusions in the transportation industry across many parts of the world. The taxi drivers said that, they have experienced a loss because of the app based raid-hailing services because their regulations and the fares don’t match with the traditional taxi industry.
The protesters blocked the roads in front of the major buildings like, administration office, parliament and the ministry of communication, which in turn created the high traffic jams. Drivers who moved to Jakarta said that, it was difficult to have a living between the taxi price wars.
One of the taxi drivers said that, they pay taxes for their vehicle, but Uber uses the private cars and they don’t pay the taxes. The person who operates the Bajaj taxi said that, he earns up to 100,000 rupiah per day that is $10 or 7 pounds, when these apps entered their city, his income started decreasing.
Hans, the person who got affected during the protest, said that, the taxi drivers saw another driver taking the passengers for the ride; they stopped the driver and started disturbing the passengers and they started to destroy the mirrors of the vehicles.
The government of Indonesia appeared in divided roles in the issue. The transport ministry was supporting the traditional taxi drivers because; the app based raid-hailing services didn’t register as the public transport. Whereas, the communication ministry said that, companies like Uber and Grab are allowed to operate within the country.
The president of Indonesia, Mr. Joko Widodo, said that, the technology should be encouraged they should not be banned.
Uber has expanded aggressively in the recent years, and it also has conflicts in different parts of the world, including, Asia, US and many European cities.
In order to achieve the market share, Grab has offered 20 free rides for the commuters.
In Mumbai, the traditional taxi drivers started protesting against cab aggregators. All the taxis stopped its operations for one day that is on the day of the protest. Uber also stopped its services for a day, except Ola, no other cab taxi operators functioned on the day of protest.
The Delhi government plans to bring out the new policies for the taxi services. Officials of the transport industry, said that, government plans to bring all the taxi services on the single platform. And the Delhi government plans to set an Upper limit for the taxi operators, no taxi providers, including the Uber and Ola are allowed to exceed the rate fixed by the government, so that everyone will have the satisfying environment to work.
One of the taxi driver said that, this is what the decision they want, this will help to have a fair market. In this scheme getting the customers will depend on the driver’s luck. The requirement of all the traditional taxi and the auto operators is that, the app based raid-hailing services should come under the control of the state government and they also demanded that these app based raid services should not provide any discounts to the customers.
One of the traditional taxi driver said that, the traditional taxis cannot change the fares because they have the government regularized meter. If the customers move to Ola and Uber, then it will be unfair for the traditional taxi drivers.
Shashank Rao took the leadership of the Mumbai auto rickshaw Union. They demanded that, the taxi drivers display their badges whenever they asked to do so, whereas, Ola and Uber don’t have such badges, and they are treated as outsiders by the traditional taxi drivers. Their second demand is that, in Mumbai, every cab driver should have the badge, which should describe him as the government authorized driver.
In Karnataka, the officials have filed 300 cases against the Uber and Ola and they have stopped 1000 taxis from functioning. As a result of this, Uber and Ola drivers protested against the transport authorities and they called this act as harassment.
Protests happen in all parts of the world, the success of the company can’t be achieved only by the positive reviews there will be some hardships too. It is the responsibility of the company to make some improvements as a result of the protests.
Anand Rajendran is the Co-Founder and CEO of Jeato, is a one stop solution for all your mobile application needs. He has is a graduate in Computer Science and Post Graduate in Entrepreneurship and leadership from Ulyanovsk State University, Russia. He is a passionate blogger & SEO Specialist. TruDrive – Uber Clone Scriptis a turn key script to launch an instant app like Uber.