Drivers' protest hits commuters hard

DUBAI — Passengers in Dubai had a tough day yesterday as they hardly found taxis for commuting because of the protest staged by drivers of Dubai Transport Corporation, and the illegal taxis that exploited the situation by doubling their fares.

By Riyasbabu

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Published: Tue 3 Jan 2006, 9:55 AM

Last updated: Sat 4 Apr 2015, 6:52 PM

Many passengers told Khaleej Times that they struggled to find taxis and were forced to depend on illegal taxis, especially in the morning which charged them much more than the actual fare.

Sanjay, a marketing executive, said: “I used to rely on a public transport bus for my travelling except during emergencies. Yesterday, I had an important meeting in Karama. I waited for a taxi near Fish Roundabout in Deira, and I couldn’t find one. Then, I was forced to take an illegal taxi and the driver charged me Dh20 to Karama, which is more than the normal rate.

He claimed that he didn’t have any option other than hiring an illegal taxi. “When I asked the driver why the charge is high, he replied that if you don’t want, I will get another passenger because the DTC taxis are off the road,” he said.

Jafar, another passenger, echoed the same sentiments. He said: “I wanted to go from Deira to Hor Al Anz for work in the morning. I waited at the Naif Road for 20 minutes. Some taxis of other companies were passing by, but they were all occupied. When an illegal taxi driver approached me, I asked him about the fare and he said he will charge Dh18.”

He pointed out that normally, illegal taxis charge less than the metered cabs, but yesterday, they had a chance to take the maximum advantage of the situation.

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