NEW DELHI: Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal had on Monday warned the taxi apps Ola and Uber for taking advantage of the current traffic restrictions in Delhi through surge pricing. The government had also issued a firm warning to the taxi apps of imposing heavy penalty if they continued the trend of ‘surge pricing’.
Ola and Uber apps have been reported as charging customers with fares five times the normal charges, taking advantage of the odd-even scheme being implemented in Delhi to combat the growing air-pollution.
“Initially, when you open their app to book a taxi, they will show normal prices something up to Rs 7 per kilometer. However, at the end of the journey they will charge you at Rs 17 to Rs 20 per kilometer. This is not a healthy business which is being carried by the taxi apps”, a customer Vasu Dev said.
Another Ola customer Dr Narisimha said, “It is very clear. People will book a taxi because of the odd-even scheme in place. We have to look for a taxi even though we have our own vehicle. And this is where the taxi firms are getting smart. They are using the demand from public to fill their pockets. It is totally unfair to charge such high tariffs”
Earlier, the Delhi Chief Minister tweeted that strict action which includes impounding of the vehicles and cancellation of the permits will be taken if Ola and Uber does not stop surge pricing.
Strict action, incl permit cancellation n impounding vehicle, to be taken against taxis which charge rates more than govt prescribed rates
– Arvind Kejriwal (@ArvindKejriwal) April 18, 2016
Eventually, the taxi operating firm has issued a statement declaring that it has stopped surge pricing in Delhi with immediate effect for the time being. However, the firms added that it is necessary for them to increase charges when there is high demand so as to felicitate the livelihood of several CNG taxi drivers.