State transport commissioner, Public taxis GPS, Public taxis tracking, Uber taxi rape case, Mumbai newsTHE office of state transport commissioner is set to introduce global positioning system (GPS) in at least public taxis across the state, with a decision to make it mandatory for the new fleet to install the system for tracking purposes. The procedure is expected to be speeded up following the ghastly incident of sexual assault on a 27-year-old woman by a Uber taxi driver Shiv Kumar Yadav in Delhi on Saturday.
While the plan to install GPS is currently set for the new taxis followed by a gradual installation process in the old fleet, no decision has been taken on whether the GPS should be made compulsory for the private radio taxis as well. “We are yet to take a call on that,” Additional Transport Commissioner S B Sahastrabudhe said. While the Congress-NCP government had announced that the normal black-and-yellow- cabs will be fitted with GPS along with radio phone and electronic meters about two years ago, GPS system has still not taken off.
Following the Saturday incident, while the Delhi government has announced to penalise private taxi drivers if they continue to ply customers on behalf of Uber services, such a move has still not been planned in Maharashtra.
“Uber has an All India Tourist Permit and they are issued this permit after undergoing all requirements. We are not taking any decision to ban the fleet in the state,” Sahastrabudhe said.
In the state Motor Vehicles Department, currently only two private taxi services — Meru and TabCab — are registered under the Fleet Taxi Scheme, 2006. All other services operate illegally after getting registered as under the All India Tourist permit. “A private taxi service is given licence after they meet all provisions under the Maharashtra Motor Vehicle Act, 1989,” said Sahastrabudhe.
Under the transport chief, the state has close to 6,000 private registered taxis, 4,000 with Meru and 2,000 with TabCab.