Following the hike of Rs 4 per kg in CNG price, the autorickshaw and taxi unions have strongly demanded an increase in fares, too. On Tuesday, the Mahanagar Gas Ltd (MGL) announced the latest hike which came into effect on Wednesday. Now, the CNG costs Rs 80 per kg, inclusive of all taxes. In less than 100 days, the price of natural gas has increased by over Rs 20 per kg.
The black and yellow taxi unions have demanded that the minimum base fare for the first 1.5 km be increased to Rs 30 from the existing Rs 25. If going beyond the base fare, passengers presently pay Rs 17 per km. But, taxi drivers are now demanding that this be increased by Rs 3 per km to make their daily trips viable.
“We are planning to meet state transport officials very soon for revision in the fares of taxi and rickshaw,” said Mumbai BJP taxi rickshaw wing leader KK Tiwari. Similarly, Mumbai Rickshawmen's Association general secretary Thampy Kurian asserted, “In less than 100 days, CNG price has increased by over Rs 20 per kg, resulting in extra burden of over Rs 2 per km on rickshaw drivers.”
Currently, the minimum fare of rickshaw is Rs 21, which needs to be increased to Rs 24. After the first km, the fare presently is Rs 14. 20 per km, whichneeds to be revised to Rs 16.32 per km, he demanded. Defending the decision of CNG price hike, the MGL official said, “The revisedMRP still offers attractive savings of about 51 per cent and 18 per cent as compared to the current price levels of petrol and diesel, respectively.”