The city taxi unions along with some autorickshaw unions in Mumbai will go on an indefinite taxi and autorickshaw strike from Thursday, September 15 onwards. The taximen confirmed the strike on Sunday.
The taxi and auto drivers are demanding a fare hike and want MMRTA (Mumbai Metropolitan Region Transport Authority) to take a decision soon. Meanwhile, representatives of some auto unions will meet the government tomorrow, September 13.The taxi unions demanded a fare hike of Rs 10 in their recent petition to CM Eknath Shinde. While the minimum fare for the metered taxis is currently Rs 25, the union demanded that the fares should be revised to Rs 30.
Earlier, the unions had called for a token strike on August 1. However, the decision was deferred after the government assured that the fares would be revised.
The Secretary, MMRTA, and Regional Transport Officer, Central Zone in his letter dated July 28, had requested the taxi unions to withdraw the proposed strike on August 1 citing that the MMRTA will revise the taxi and rickshaw fares at the earliest.
“We were assured two weeks back that hikes will be announced, but this got postponed. Our drivers are losing Rs 200 earnings daily,” said AL Quadros from Mumbai Taximen’s union. As per taxi unions, over the last few months, CNG prices have increased by almost 70 per cent but the fares have remained the same making it difficult for auto and taxi drivers to make ends meet.
According to AL Quadros, the price of CNG has gone up by a total of Rs 32 since the last rate revision in March 2021. In August, Mahanagar Gas cut the prices of Piped Natural Gas (PNG) and Compressed Natural Gas (CNG), following an increase in the allocation of domestically produced natural gas from the government.The price of PNG has been reduced by Rs 4 per standard cubic metre (SCM) to be at Rs 48.50 per SCM, while that of CNG has been reduced by Rs 6 a kg to Rs 80 per kg, as per an official statement.