Travellers arriving at Dadar railway station have been facing major issues finding a taxi for their journey ahead. According to regular commuters, there is a desperate need to initiate action against errant taxi drivers to end the harassment of passengers at their hands at Dadar.
Apart from refusing short fares, taxi drivers park their vehicles haphazardly outside the east side of the station and enter the platform to solicit customers who have arrived on long-distance trains. These cabbies usually only ply towards the suburbs, often overcharge passengers and also refuse to ply by meter rates.
Our correspondent visited Dadar station on Monday afternoon he found more than half a dozen taxi drivers lined in a queue in front of the terminus on the Central Railway side. However, none of them was ready to go towards Wadala, Five Gardens, Parel or Prabhadevi.
“These taxi drivers corner passengers and demand exorbitant charges from them. Some of them even venture inside the station premises to solicit customers,” said 29-year-old Vishvesh Kardam from Prabhadevi.
Out of 112 taxi drivers only 32 agreed to ply
On Monday FPJ checked with 112 taxi drivers in Dadar (east and west) to ply to various locations including Prabhadevi, Siddhivinayak Temple, Chaityabhoomi, Wadala, Five Gardens and Ram Mandir. Only 32 drivers were ready to go while the rest bluntly refused.
“My daughter lives in Pune and hence I go there often. However, it is a tough task getting a cab to go from Dadar station to my house in Wadala. Many of these cabbies charge excess fare and also misbehave with passengers,” said Rituja Bhandari.
Cab drivers are cheating customers
Our correspondent also witnessed a firsthand instance of cheating when a man asked a taxi driver (vehicle no. MH 02 BQ 7724) outside Dadar (east) station if he would drive him to Five Gardens. However, the driver refused to ply unless he was paid Rs100.
The situation is the same on the west side. When our correspondent asked a taxi driver (MH 02 DQ 0651) at Khabutar Khana to take him to Chatyabhoomi near Shivaji Park he demanded Rs100. When told that he was overcharging he bluntly retorted, “Doosra taxi dekh lo” (find another cab). The distance between Kabutar Khana and Chatyabhumi is around 1.5 km and the fare comes to Rs30-35 by the meter.
According to Ram Raj Sharma from Thane, most taxi drivers refuse to ferry passengers from Kabutar Khana to Siddhivinayak temple. “I am trying to get a cab to Siddhivinayak temple for more than 15 minutes, but taxi drivers are demanding Rs100. They don't want to ply as per the approved metered fare,” he said as he waited for a taxi with his family.
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