The Karnataka Transport Department issued notices to cab-aggregating services Ola and Uber for not disabling child lock in vehicles operating on their platforms. The government has decided to disable the Child lock feature because it is viewed as a threat to womenâ€™s safety in cabs.
An official from the department told the High Court on Wednesday that the child lock system has been disabled in around 42,000 of the 2.5 lakh cabs registered in the state, which is around 16.8% of the cabs plying. The process of disabling child locks in cabs could now take up to three months.
â€śOla and Uber are showing no interest to ensure their driver partners disable the child lock system. We have issued notices to both the cab aggregators, asking why their licence should not be revoked for not complying with the new rules,â€ť Narayana Swamy, additional commissioner for transport (enforcement), told Economic Times.
Additional Advocate-General (AAG) A.S. Ponnanna told the High Court division bench comprising acting Chief Justice L. Narayana Swamy and Justice P.S. Dinesh Kumar that the process of deactivating the child lock system in a car is a tedious one, requiring around two hours for each vehicle, reported The Hindu.
The Transport Department had earlier directed cabs to disable child lock systems in all vehicles by January 16 after a change was made in the Karnataka Motor Vehicles Act on December 14, 2018. Cab owners and drivers are required to obtain a certificate from the regional transport office. However, it appears that the process will now take up to three months to be implemented fully.
Ola, in a statement later clarified, "We are closely working with Karnataka State Transport Department on the issue around disabling child locks in vehicles. Building a safe experience for all users of the Ola platform has been the top most priority for us at all times."