Congress extends support to cab drivers strike

Hyderabad, January 3: The Congress party on Tuesday announced its complete support to the drivers of Uber and Ola who are on strike in protest against increase in number of vehicles and insufficient bookings.

The Joint Action Committee (JAC), comprising of Telangana State Cabs Association (TSCA), Telangana Cabs Association (TCA), Telangana Hyderabad Cabs Association (THCA) and Telangana Cabs Union (TCU), held a day-long dharna on Tuesday at Indira Park to press for their demands for stopping of new registrations by the Uber and Ola managements to ensure that the existing drivers get promised bookings.

Addressing the dharna camp, TPCC Vice-President Dr. Mallu Ravi said that nearly one lakh cab drivers have been protesting for the last four days in support of their fully justified demands. He said poor unemployed youth have purchased new cabs on loans and got them engaged with Uber and Ola while expecting to earn a decent living. However, he said that the Uber and Ola managements have been playing different tricks to keep the drivers hooked to their debts and feel insecure. He said that the Congress party would strongly oppose the managements who try to fetch profits by exploiting others.

Mallu Ravi strongly condemned the State Government for being non-responsive to the cab drivers' strike. He said that instead of questioning the Uber and Ola, the TRS Government was supporting these foreign companies as if the Telangana was under the rule of East India Company. He said that the App-based aggregators were flouting all rules and norms to ruin the livelihood of poor cab drivers. He also condemned the launch of two-wheeler cabs which was launched from the premises of Chief Minister's Camp office. He asked whether Industries Minister K. Tarakarama Rao holds any stake in Uber.

Speaking on the occasion, TPCC Spokesperson Syed Nizamuddin demanded that the Uber and Ola managements stop the leasing system and give preference to the existing cab drivers. He said new registrations should be done only when the present drivers get surplus bookings. He also demanded ban on sharing cabs which was damaging the entire travel industry.

Thousands of cab drivers took part in the day-long dharna and vowed to continue their agitation unless all their demands are met. Earlier, they also took out a rally from Gowshala in Lower Tank Bund to the Dharna Chowk.