Taxi union opposes ‘rooftop indicators’ on Mumbai cabs

Taxi union opposes 'rooftop indicators' on Mumbai cabs
Mumbai Taximen’s Union has asked authorities to keep the proposal of rooftop indicators on hold till pending issues like fare hike, city taxi scheme, etc are addressed (Representational Image, Courtesy: mybigplunge.com)

A day after Maharashtra Transport Department mandated the installation of rooftop indicators on kaali-peeli taxis plying in Mumbai, the city’s largest taxi union has opposed the move.

Earlier this week, the state transport department issued a notification which made the installation of colour-coded indicators compulsory for all new cabs.

The decision, which comes into effect from February 1, however, is facing opposition from the city’s largest taxi union – Mumbai Taximen’s Union.

In a letter to transport commissioner Shekhar Channe, the union’s leader A L Quadros has said they are strongly opposed to the proposal of installing rooftop indicator lights on black-and-yellow cabs.

The union has cited the transport department’s failure to improve the condition of the ailing taxi trade and delay in implementing the Mumbai City Taxi Scheme and the Khataua Committee Report as reasons for opposing the move.

Additionally, the department has also failed to revise the taxi fares despite the fact that CNG prices have jumped up by Rs 9.50 since the last fare revision, the letter said.

Further, a large number of city taxis ply under the share taxi scheme or as prepaid taxis near airport and railway stations, which do not require the rooftop lights, it added.

“We hereby request you to keep the proposal of fixing the rooftop indicator light on meter taxis (on hold) till the above stated issues facing the trade are discussed and appropriate relief is granted,” Quadros said.

Per the state transport department’s notification, all new cabs will be required to have rooftop indicators with green, red and white coloured LED lights.

A taxi with the green light on would indicate it is available for ferrying passengers, red would mean the cab is occupied and white would imply that it is unavailable for hire.

Apart from LED lights, the indicators will have letters ‘For Hire’, ‘Hired’ and ‘Off Duty’, in English as well as Marathi languages.

While all new cabs plying on the road from February 1 will have to get the indicators fixed from day one, the older ones will have to do so at the time of getting a fitness certificate from respective RTOs.

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