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Call the cab! Tell them to join the Union!!

Bengaluru, Karnataka

I booked a cab to reach home recently!!?? A cab!! Like a bourgeoisie. Dafaq!!! It was quite fucking unbelievable as I had always thought they ‘ll charge several hundred rupees for a trip. But it was free!!!! There was some promotional offer which allowed me to travel for free and the driver who dropped me was quite happy at the end of the trip. Someone as dumb as me can figure out that he didn’t lose any money on that trip as he was paid for by the “cab aggregator” whose services I used to call the cab.

What sounds like a very simple transaction got me curious and when I asked around, found that many people are buying cars by taking loans to ride for these firms as the earning potentials is about half a lakh a month!? How the fuck is it even possible? It looks like, these people have such a higher utilization when compared to the traditional taxi services and hence they can make do with lower margin and still earn more revenue. All sounds good, but…

I used another phone number to create a new account, booked a free ride and stroked up a conversation with the driver. These drivers are not actually the employees of the Uber/Ola, but apparently “partners” and hence they do not get any job security, EPF, Insurance, et al. However these driver partners are very happy as they receive a lot of incentives and at times they earn more than what the customers pay to the cab aggregator!!

Any commie will find all these to be very suspicious. These driver partners once they are used to this routing and when the users are familiarized with the luxury, no one can stop these people from increasing their prices to any amount they want!!? O.o These companies are not bound by any labour laws as these drivers aren’t technically the employees, but partners. This shit is too heinous as these partners are completely at the mercy of those companies who are in turn funded by the elites looking for huuuuuugggee return on investments.

The users won’t complain about any of these however as these cab charges are often less (at least for now) than what an auto rickshaw charges. :-/ No wonder those yuppies in the city have switched to these Ola, Uber things. Those yuppies are so happy with the service as they do not have to bargain with the auto drivers or traditional cabbies, and even those who used to stick to public transport have started taking these cabs! No wonder silk board signal has gotten so worse in last few months. :-/ This is quite fucked up as we are struggling to push people to use public transport, these firms are driving the people away from public transport and in turn increasing the traffic congestion, fuel consumption and carbon emission.

I mustered up the courage to talk to a few people at the CITU auto stand and they told about the drop in revenue, but I think I might have “lead the witness.” Though the drivers weren’t convincing enough for me when they talked about the loss in revenue, it is pretty clear that they are in for a rough ride. It is going be tougher for those “driver partners” unless they all join hands and form a strong union.