Even as the truckers and tempo drivers across India were observing a 'chakka jam' in protest against the toll plazas, some black and yellow taxi drivers organised a sudden protest at Mumbai's Tardeo RTO. Mumbai Taximens Union leader AL Quadros along with over 100 taxi drivers met RTO officers at Tardeo.
"We want the RTO to take action against the private tourist cars that ferry passengers," said Quadros. The meeting went on for nearly 30 minutes with the drivers even barging into the RTO officers' cabin.
Taximen gather at Tardeo RTO.
The taxi union has claimed that these private vehicles on tourist permits take people from Mulund and Borivali on the Eastern and Western Express Highways and ferry them till south Mumbai for a mere Rs 10-40 per passenger depending on the distance travelled.
The RTO officers, meanwhile, said that they are contantly taking action against such vehicles that breach the rules. The union members instead wanted these private tourist cabs to be part of their fleet and metered cabs so that it would also help them. Earlier, black and yellow cabbies had a problem with mobile aggregators like Ola and Uber. On the other hand, the 'chakka jam' didn't affect the common Mumbaikar too much since essential services like milk vans and vegetable trucks were spared.
Interestingly, there was severe traffic jam from Mahalaxmi right up to Tardeo. The taximen had parked their cabs, both inside the RTO premises and on the road, which did affect the flow of traffic to added to the traffic chaos.