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A number of commuters were made to alight from their cabs mid-journey during peak hours, as a fresh strike was launched on Wednesday.

Ola and Uber drivers launch fresh strike in Bengaluru as aggregators stay silent on their demandsImage for representation only
news Protest Wednesday, February 22, 2017 - 20:19

Protests by Ola and Uber drivers in Bengaluru hit a higher pitch on Wednesday, as commuters were made to alight from cabs mid-journey during peak hours.

“We have begun an indefinite strike in Bengaluru on Wednesday,” said Tanvir Pasha, President of the Ola, TaxiForSure and Uber Drivers’ Association.

He also claimed that over 80% of the drivers affiliated with the aggregators had joined the strike, while a few others chose to carry on with plying cabs. Pasha added that, “We are not forcing people to join the strike.” However, he conceded that in Indiranagar, MG Road, Hebbal, Electronic City and Hebbal, commuters were made to get off the cabs, clarifying that this was not sanctioned as part of the protest.

The Ola, TaxiForSure and Uber (OTU) Drivers and Owners Union want, among other demands, an increase in incentives, ban on ride-sharing services and hike in the airport fare.

"We had given time till Tuesday as the company officials had promised to conduct a meeting on Tuesday. So far, there has been no response from their end. Last week, when two drivers attempted to commit suicide, they made tall promises after the DCP intervened. They said they would provide solutions to our problems by Tuesday. The government has not done anything but accept a few complaints we have filed,” he said.

Prior to the strike begun on Wednesday, drivers had been agitating for over a month, organising several protests across the city and boycotting work on several days. 

Pasha alleged, “Ola has been charging penalties for no reason at all. They have appointed a separate team, which slaps unnecessary allegations against drivers and deducts their earnings on the pretext of penalties. They had promised us that we would be able to earn Rs 1 lakh per month and we hardly make Rs 20,000. In addition, they are deducting more money as penalties. Should we live or die?”

Representatives of the aggregators were unavailable for comment on the current round of strikes. 

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