After multiple similar strikes, Uber and Ola drivers are halting their services across the country from today. Prices are expected to skyrocket during the strike due to the shortage of cabs. Apart from high-prices, the waiting period for a cab is also expected to go up significantly.
The drivers, along with their families are planning to protest outside the offices of cab-hailing giants. Maharashtra Navnirman Vahatuk Sena's Sanjay Naik said that the business of these drivers have taken a deep plunge over the years due to the 'mismanagement' of these companies. He also added that if their demands are not met, then the protest could go on indefinitely.
The drivers are demanding that Uber and Ola should ensure the business that they promised in the beginning. According to a report by Financial Express, that business amounts to Rs 1.25 lakh per month. Moreover, the association wants Uber and Ola to discontinue company-owned cabs entirely, reinstate drivers with a low rating, stop low fares and decide fares based on the cars.
Needless to say, their protest will affect the day-to-day business of big cities like Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Chennai and Kolkata, but it will also hit smaller cities to a great extent. Smaller cities have low prices and to add to that the comfort, ease and security of these cabs has resulted in a rapid expansion of these services.
Cab drivers have been making their dissatisfaction known for a while now with the way the cab-hailing business is taking shape. Banks are also seizing the vehicles of drivers as they are unable to pay back their loans and feed their family at the same time even after long, strenuous hours of work.
According to reports, the incentives that drivers used to get have also decreased, while Uber and Ola still continue to charge 20-25% of the fee on every trip.
Uber commands 50% of the Indian market and Ola holds 44.2%. Their growth rate is expected to be 19.6% taking the market volume to USD 761 million by 2022.
Last year, the drivers of the two cab-hailing services conducted major protests in light of decreasing revenues which eventually led to financial burden in form of car loans and maintenance. After the protest in April last year, Uber had approached Delhi High Court seeking Rs 12 crore in damages due to drives assosiations accusations.
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