Uber Adamant to Pursue Surge Pricing in Delhi Despite CM’s Directive
The second phase of odd-even formula did not go as planned considering the loss of cabs on the road thanks to Arvind Kejriwal’s warning against surge pricing. Ola and Uber shared that the number of their cabs on the road had reduced owing to the directive for the 15 day period.
All this was fine for 15 days, people could somehow manage using OlaShare or UberPool and make their travel arrangements. Now that the policy is over, Delhi CM has warned against a strict action if Uber and Ola are found to be using surge pricing in the capital.
Uber on the other hand, and in its complete senses, has reacted by continuing with surge prices in Delhi. Although Ola has
not officially said anything about the issue, Uber does not want to reduce the number of cabs available on the road because of this ban.
[Updated] Ola’s Statement
There is currently no peak pricing on the Ola platform in Delhi NCR.
— Ola (@Olacabs) May 2, 2016
Why is the ban decision immature?
The sole motive of having surge is to have differential pricing in peak hours. If someone wants to travel in peak hours or off-timed hours then they can pay extra but definitely travel to that place. With the ban in place, most drivers would not ply with the service, which brings us back to the pre-cab aggregator era.
Arvind Kejriwal claims to have caught the cab aggregators doing ‘daylight robbery’ when a person is in complete senses while booking a cab and accepting the surge. I agree 3x or more surge sounds completely insane and it is better to avoid the cab unless urgent, but a surge is exactly why we have so many cabs on road these days.
One of the senior officials at a cab aggregator service said, “As far as we know, there are no sections under which they can book us for surge pricing. Now that odd-even rule is over we should be allowed to get back to normal business. We will see if they impound our cabs, then what sections can they book us under.”
Apparently Uber’s senior officials feel that there is no law under which the cabs can be seized and a case be booked.
What the Government wants?
The Delhi and Karnataka Governments banned surge pricing and claimed it as ‘robbery’ and ‘fleecing the customers’, which the public did not feel so. There is differential pricing in railways, airfares and other transportation methods, so why should cabs come under the banner?
As it is Uber and Ola are running at as cheap as Rs. 6/km, compared to radio taxis like Meru and Easycabs that charge thrice the amount. The Government wants to fix the range of cab charges an aggregator can levy, which comes to a point that there is no free economy. If the Government is going to control everything, how can one do business freely and within law?
Delhi’s CM Arvind Kejriwal needs to understand that surge was one of the reasons so many cabs were available at all times, even if at a higher price. It should be left to the customer if he/she wants to travel at proportionally higher costs or not.
Kejriwal has warned of action against cab aggregators if they continue to ply with surge. The coming weeks are going to see war between cab companies and Delhi Government and might not result in the best interest of the common man.
What do you think about this whole scenario? Share your views in the comments below.