Bike taxi service Rapido began operations in Mumbai on Friday, a move the Maharashtra government said does not have its sanction. The firm, which started in 2015, now operates in 100 cities. On Friday, the company announced that 2,000 captains or driver partners could now be booked for short-distance trips through its app. It has set fares at Rs 6 per kilometre.
State Transport Commissioner Avinash Dhakne said he had not given permission to Rapido to start operations. “The company approached me 15 days ago seeking permission to begin operating on a pilot basis in Andheri. I said I cannot grant permission and asked them to submit a proposal, which will be evaluated by the State Transport Authority, the statutory body to do so,” he said.
Dhakne added that the transport department was not considering giving the go-ahead to bike taxi services during the pandemic. “Any proposal for a bike taxi service in Mumbai needs to be evaluated. There is the question of whether so many additional two-wheelers on the road will reduce traffic congestion or add to it. Also it is not feasible at the moment as many commuters may not want to ride with strangers,” he said.
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