Ola, Uber Drivers In Bengaluru Refuse To Switch On AC In Cabs: Find Out Why?
The cab drivers from the center of India’s high-tech industry, Bengaluru have now started a ‘no AC’ policy to give a glimpse of the difficulties faced by Ola and Uber drivers amid a fuel price hike and low commissions.
How Did This Happen?
Prior to this, the same has happened with the cities including West Bengal, New Delhi, Noida and Telangana.
The move comes unfortunately at a time when the whole nation is facing the blistering heat as April is the warmest month for Bengaluru.
Weather forecasts recorded an average high-temperature of 35.8°C during this time.
As of April 5, petrol price in the state increased to Rs. 109.82 per liter from the earlier cost of Rs 100.14 per liter recorded on March 28.
Reports also indicate that the cab drivers from other cities have also demanded extra fare from passengers for switching on the air conditioning.
Similarly, a few passengers in Bengaluru have also reported their experience where cab drivers refuse to switch on the AC.
Coming to the cab drivers, they would avoid turning on the ACs by citing either COVID-19 protocols.
Some say that the AC is included only in the Ola Prime and sedan bookings.
‘No AC’ Campaign In Hyderabad
A similar kind of incident was reported in Hyderabad in late March, where Telangana Gig and Platform Workers Union (TGPWU) started a ‘no AC’ campaign for the same reasons.
The drivers would explain to the passengers in a non-confrontational manner the reasons for not providing a cool ride, citing the hike in petrol and diesel prices and a low commission per ride.
Reports noted that the Cab drivers associations from various parts of the country are reaching out to their respective state governments for concessions and subsidies.
They are hoping for some relief as the fuel price hikes and low commissions put together are burning a hole in cabbies pockets.
Cab Users Suffering In Summer
In absence of the ac services, the cab users have taken to Twitter.
One such user named Rahul Shukla wrote a message about the issue tagging the Ola cabs handle and founder Bhavish Aggarval, “Your cab driver in Bang(alore) do not switch on AC citing comp diktat due to covid & they do not wear mask. On raising a complaint no action or part refund is done. When we book a cab it is implied that it will have AC if needed. I would rather take an auto if it isn’t so.”
Purnima M. Mishra, another such victim, wrote on Twitter, “@Olacabs I am on an Ola trip right now from Mahadevapura to Bilekahalli, Bengaluru. I was trying to book an Ola Mini but my ride got upgraded to Ola Prime Sedan. Now when I ask the driver to turn on the AC, he denies saying ‘Ola Mini me AC nahi hota’. Kindly Act.”