Govt. could cap Ola/Uber surge pricing, commissions charged and also emphasizes on women safety

Team OD Published: November 28, 2019, 12:47 PM IST

If you are one of the frequent users of cab hailing services like Ola and Uber, you must've gone through an unfortunate instance of paying a ridiculous amount for your trip the under the garb of surge pricing. If If the Indian Government has its way, this will soon be a thing of past. Under the new guidelines of motor vehicles act, the Government is planing to put a cap on the surge pricing which could be a maximum of twice the base fare and not exceeding that. The base fare can be either suggested by the operator or the state government, which will be reviewed every quarter. Additionally, it also wants the cab aggregators to charge a maximum of 10 per cent of the fare as commission and let the drivers/partners earn 90 percent.

As per a report by ETAuto, these amendments will be shared with the public next week to get a proper feedback from the customers. Additionally, these updates regulations, if gets passed by the public, will be made a part of the Motor Vehicles Act 2019, not letting them operate as a separate institution but as a part of the overall transportation medium. The suggestions by the Government are in line with its efforts to bring a uniform set of rules for  cab hailing services like Ola and Uber.

Cancellation of rides

The new guidelines also have provision for cancelling of rides by the drivers, which has been a serious issue lately. The document suggests that a penalty of 10-50 per cent of the total fare will be imposed on the driver, that cannot cross a total Rs 100. There will also be a maximum limit on cancellations that a driver can do in a week. If the limit gets crossed, the cab operator can suspend the driver for two days. And it is not just the cab service operator and the driver but also the passenger who could face a ride cancelling penalty of 10 to 50 per cent of the base fare, not crossing Rs 100.

Insurance cover and safety of women passengers

In an effort to emphasis on the safety of women passengers using cab services, there could be an option of women-only pooling for shared cab. The rider would also be given a Rs 5 lakh insurance cover, which will take care of the expenses during unfortunate incidents and accidents. The cab operators will also have to device to facial recognition or a biometric system to verify if the driver in the cab once every three hours to ensure the driver is the same as listed.

Bigger picture

The proposed tweaks and changes by the Government intends to promote ride sharing in the country, to curb the growing issue of traffic congestion due to the increasing number of vehicles on road. This will not only help reduce the number of vehicles plying on the road but will also bring down the pollution levels as well. The changes also want the passenger and the driver partner to benefit from the system. Additionally, the bigger interest is to make to the city taxi operators a part of the cab services.

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