Thursday, October 16, 2008

Mumbai drivers want to retain old taxis, go on strike

Published on Thursday, October 16, 2008

New Delhi: The Mumbai Autorickshaw-Taximen's Union went on one-day strike on Thursday protesting the state government’s move to phase out old taxis in a bid to tackle pollution.

The daily commuter would be badly hit as about 1.5 lakh autorickshaws and over 50,000 taxis would stay off the roads during the strike.

The union said removing existing taxis, a majority of which are of the Premier Padmini make, was wrong since the emission norms prescribed were being met by the vehicles.

"The union is calling for the one day strike to protest against the Maharashtra government's decision to phase out taxis which are over 25 years old and other issues which have not been resolved," head of the union, Sharad Rao, said.

Taxi owners have demanded a permit to run old taxis from Airports, exemption from toll charges and a ban on forceful installation of meters.

The union is demanding a hike in fares, making electronic meters optional, exemptions from paying toll tax and professional tax for taxi drivers, abolition of fleet taxis and providing facilities for taxi drivers at the city's airport.

(With PTI inputs)

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