Goa taxi war: State’s sole app-based taxi service concerned about safety of drivers

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Panaji, Dec 27 (IANS) Amid ongoing conflict with the state’s private taxi operators, Goa’s first app-based taxi service GOAMILES on Wednesday said that the company is “deeply concerned” about the safety of its 1,000 odd taxi drivers and has sought action against those involved in the numerous assaults on its drivers.

“We are deeply concerned about the safety and security of our personnel as well as of passengers who are opting for our services. This allegedly unruly behaviour of a certain disgruntled section of taxi operators will not be acceptable and neither will it deter us,” J. Sumeth spokesperson for GOAMILES said late on Wednesday.

The taxi service was started earlier this year in alliance with Goa Tourism, amid protests by Goan private taxi operators, who have been accused by both the government as well as local commuters and tourists for arbitrary pricing of fares.

Sumeth claimed that three drivers, who are enrolled with the app-based taxi service were assaulted in the last one week alone, the latest being an assault on their taxi driver outside a starred hotel in the popular Baga beach area in North Goa.

“The complainant who has been successfully operating under GOAMILES, in his report has stated, that he was abused severely by 10 to 15 persons whom he identified as taxi operators and drivers after a passenger boarded his vehicle at Baga,” Sumeth said.

Goa is one of the top beach tourism destinations in the country, which attracts more than seven million tourists every year, half a million being foreigners.

However, lack of infrastructure and public transport has been the state’s handicap, with no standardised fare in place for taxi and auto operators.

–IANS

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