After more than a week of being off the roads, a section of the cab drivers was back on the streets. Since December 30, a large number of cabs in Hyderabad have been off the streets on a serious strike.
The drivers have demanded that no new cabs be licensed until existing drivers are guaranteed a minimum of daily bookings.
Meanwhile, the strike by cab associations entered the tenth day on Monday. While drivers said that they had been called in for talks at the road transport department office, officials bluntly refused this claim.
T Raghunath, joint transport commissioner (JTC) on a day of fast-paced developments said,
“There were no talks held today and we did not ask any cabbies or aggregators to come to our office. We tried to resolve the issue, but now it is up to them. They have to quickly come to some conclusion and solve their issues on their own.“
However, with talks failing and the government refusing to intervene further, the cab drivers are expected to end the protest soon.
A senior office bearer of the protesting taxi association said although cab aggregators did not turn up for discussions, there was a possibility of the strike getting called off on Tuesday keeping in view the problems faced by denizens.
Late on Monday night, Telangana Cab Drivers’ and Owners’ Association president Shiva said he would hand over the protest to retired Justice Chandra Kumar, CITU state secretary Sai Baba and JAC chairman Kodandaram at a press meet to be held on Tuesday morning.
Ola, for its part, sent out a message via its app saying that it was now back and fully functional in Hyderabad.
“We are now back and fully functional in Hyderabad. Sorry for the inconvenience caused,” the message read.
But people continued to find it difficult to book cabs and faced a tough time heading to and fro work. “The Ola I booked kept me waiting at Banjara Hills for an hour before I decided to take an auto,” said Sahana Das, a designer. Uber officials could not be reached despite repeated attempts.