Delhi auto, taxi drivers call off strike after government assurance
After two days of bringing the national capital to a standstill and causing commuters to suffer, autorickshaw and yellow-top taxi drivers on Thursday night called off their indefinite strike following an assurance from the Delhi government on their demands.
Joint Action Committee of Auto and Taxi Unions (JACATU) president Rajendra Soni said: “We have ended our strike after getting an assurance letter from Satyendar Jain (Transport Minister). Now, autorickshaw and taxi services will resumed from today (Thursday) night.”
Soni said the minister had accepted JACATU’s demands. He warned that if the government went back on its promises, all autorickshaw and taxi drivers will again resort to strike.
“The government has agreed to formulate a policy for app-based cab aggregators like Uber and Ola,” Soni said.
A Delhi government in a statement said if any vehicle registered outside Delhi is found plying as auto or taxi in Delhi it would be either challaned or impounded.
“Now it would not be mandatory for the auto and taxi drivers to take class for getting their light motor vehicle (LMV) license renewed. It was also decided in the meeting that autos and taxis coming from NCR will not ferry passengers outside Delhi while going back,” the statement said.
Autorickshaws and yellow top taxi drivers went on an indefinite strike on Tuesday against app-based cab aggregators.
The Delhi government announced on Wednesday evening that 17 unions had decided to call off the strike.
Thousands of autorickshaws returned to the roads on Thursday amid a continuing strike by some unions, but passengers complained that those still on strike forced them out of the plying autos.
Incidents of forcible stopping of autorickshaws were reported from several areas in the capital, making commuting difficult.
The Delhi government has alleged that the strike was covertly backed by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).
Delhi is home to some 90,000 autorickshaws and 15,000 yellow top taxis. The autorickshaws, considered the poor man’s taxi, are particularly critical to the capital’s commuting needs.