Ola and Uber continue to charge surge pricing, Delhi HC told

Magic Sewa moves Delhi HC as it contends that app-based taxi services are not complying with the court’s order of following the price cap set by the Delhi govt


The Delhi high court questioned the Delhi government if it had fixed a minimum fare or prohibited offering of discounts by app-based taxis and inform the court on the next hearing. Photo: Mint
The Delhi high court questioned the Delhi government if it had fixed a minimum fare or prohibited offering of discounts by app-based taxis and inform the court on the next hearing. Photo: Mint

New Delhi: App-based taxi services such as Ola and Uber are continuing to charge surge pricing, the Delhi high court was told on Tuesday.

Magic Sewa, a Delhi-based taxi service, contended that app-based taxi services were not complying with the court’s order of 11 August under which they had been directed to follow the price cap set by the Delhi government.

It was also pointed out that aggregators were indulging in discriminatory pricing by offering discounts and offers that were disrupting competition in the transport sector. This contention was, however, not accepted by Justice Manmohan; he held that this issue should be brought before the anti-trust regulator, Competition Commission of India (CCI).

In this regard, the court questioned the state government if it had fixed a minimum fare or prohibited offering of discounts by app-based taxis and inform the court on the next hearing.

On 11 August, the court had directed app-based taxi services not to charge more than the stipulated prices set by the Delhi government. This was to be applicable from 22 August. It also directed a panel appointed by the central government to come up with a policy to govern all cab services nationwide. (http://bit.ly/2bnfFZP)

On the issue of approaching the CCI for alleged anti-competitive practices by app-based taxi service providers, Rakesh Agarwal, chief executive of Magic Sewa, said: “We were forced to come to the Delhi high court for this issue because no outcome could be expected from CCI.”

Under the notification of the Delhi government, rates for radio cabs are set at Rs.23 per km in Delhi with the night charges (between 11pm and 5am) being set at 25% above the fare.

The case has been tagged with other cases challenging the legality of app-based aggregators in the country and will be heard next on 21 November.

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