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Thousands of drivers in Indian cities take action against ride-hailing firms

news 25 Oct 2018

On 22 October, workers in Mumbai, Delhi, Hyderabad, Bangalore and many other cities walked out to demand decent income and working conditions. The ITF estimates that between 50 and 80 percent of Uber and Ola cabs were off the road in these cities.

In Mumbai, the ITF-affiliated Maharashtra Rajya Rashtriya Kamgar Sangh (MRRKS) protested at the Uber offices.

Drivers in India have been hit twice by falling fares and rising fuel prices. This means that Uber drivers' earnings have dropped 22 percent in the last year.

The unions also demand that Uber and Ola should be recognised and regulated as taxi companies to deal with the other issues, which include:

  • A demand for per kilometre rates to increase inline with fuel prices
  • Drivers daily working hours (presently 14-16 hours) should be reduced
  • Drivers must be considered as employees of the firms
  • Health and accident insurance for drivers
  • A cap on the size of Ola and Uber fleets in cities

ITF Asia Pacific assistant regional secretary Sangam Tripathy said: "For the last year we have been meeting with unions organising in Ola and Uber. This led to the MRRKS joining the ITF, and now the first ever coordinated multi-city action in Ola and Uber."

Mac Urata, ITF’s future of work coordinator, added: "These firms need to come to the table and negotiate, they can't put their heads in the sand and pretend this is not happening. These workers are demanding their rights, and they will not be ignored."

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