Role of call centres key point in Call Taxi Scheme

The role of call centres of app-based aggregators is being outlined, especially during distress calls

After a 30-year-old woman was molested and stalked by the driver of an app-based aggregator, the safety of passengers on these services has come into question. This incident comes at a time when the transport department, Mumbai Police and app-based aggregators are mulling over the Call Taxi Scheme, 2015. An important point in this scheme is the role of call centres of the mobile aggregator when they receive distress calls.

The prototype of an SOS system was installed in a few black and yellow cabs recently
The prototype of an SOS system was installed in a few black and yellow cabs recently

The act mentions ‘The licensee (mobile aggregator) shall ensure the facility of a panic button in the Taxi so that in case of any distress, the signal is transmitted to the control centre of the licensee and there from, to the nearest Police Station / Police Control Room, as also a hooter to raise alarm in case of a mishap’. Transport officials said that this scheme is likely to be approved by June.

“We will bring this system, wherein once the distress calls are made, the call centres of the aggregator should gauge its seriousness. If it’s a case of molestation or any criminal intimidation, they immediately need to divert it to the police help line,” explained an official from the transport department. At present, SOS calls go to the call centres.

However, while this is being promised, the operators claim that over the last several months, discussions with the transport department and police have not brought much development.

Sources said that in the last meeting, police had asked aggregators to make precise arrangements for diverting distress calls. “There is every possibility that not all calls can be genuine. There is a need to segregate the genuine cases and that’s what we’re working on,” said an official from a mobile aggregator.

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