After the cabinet meeting on Thursday, September 9, the Goa state government has decided to implement a uniform fare chart for GoaMiles and tourist taxis to bring parity.
According to CM Dr. Pramod Sawant, this scheme will provide every taxi operator with digital meters and free data service worth Rs 11,250 for one year. GoaMiles taxis will also be fitted with digital meters. So far, 2500 taxis have been installed with digital meters.
“And their rates have been hiked to bring in uniformity. Their drivers will have to wear badges, which will be issued if they have a 15-year domicile. This will resolve the issue of private taxi operators, which has been pending for a long time now. I had assured that before Ganesh Chaturthi, I will take steps to address the unrest among the taxi operators. In today’s cabinet, the issue stands resolved,” Sawant said at the cabinet meeting.
However, some taxi operators have started protesting, opposing the new scheme. Addressing a press conference in Panaji, spokesperson for the protesting taxi operators Chetan Kamat also urged the Chief Minister to sit across a table with them to resolve the long-pending issue. Kamat said that the fare meter installed by the government is faulty.
“The meters are faulty. It consumes a high amount of battery, the meter malfunctions. When the taxi is switched off and parked for the night, the battery goes down by dawn. If a taxi catches fire, will the government buy our taxi operators a new car? Government has to tell us this,” Kamat complained.