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We want cameras in taxis, say Dubai residents

Dhanusha Gokulan (Principal Correspondent)/Dubai
dhanusha@khaleejtimes.com Filed on August 7, 2015 | Last updated on August 7, 2015 at 07.51 am
We want cameras in taxis, say Dubai residents
Officials at the Public Transport Agency (PTA) of Dubai's RTA revealed that they are considering installing cameras in Dubai's taxis, as well.

The cameras should be used to curb aggressive driving, use of mobile phone while driving, fare dodgers, and to settle disputes.

Dubai must follow Abu Dhabi transport's footsteps, and install cameras in Dubai taxis, said taxi drivers and residents.

The cameras should be used to curb aggressive driving, use of mobile phone while driving, fare dodgers, and to settle disputes.

The need for cameras in Dubai taxis was raised after the Centre for Regulation of Transport by Hire Cars (TransAD) in Abu Dhabi announced that they would be installing 100 CCTV cameras in their fleet of taxis this year.

A poll on khaleejtimes.com and social media websites showed that 74 per cent of the respondents want cameras installed in the taxis. Only 26 per cent said it is not required.

Over 1, 600 people responded to the poll of which 1, 200 people said yes to CCTV cameras being installed. A majority of the respondents said cameras are a good idea.

Filipino national Edlyn Lopez posted a comment on Facebook saying: "Yes, we need it.... Some taxi drivers don't care about the warning signs on their screen when they are driving above the speed limit." She said some drivers are very rude. "If you want to go to nearby places they will tell you to walk. Even if the weather outside is really hot," she added.

However, some residents said that it would be an infringement on the privacy of passengers.

"Installing CCTV inside taxis will improve the standard of service, but it will have some amount of discomfort with the passengers, especially on females," said Girish Edathitta in a Facebook comment.

"Some people pay an exorbitant fare for getting some sort of privacy. Only a small percentage of passengers or drivers misbehave. This step will discourage genuine passengers from hiring such taxis," added Edathitta.

He recommended taxis to be marked with and without cameras and review which one attracts more passengers. Several passengers were also worried about hike in taxi fares with the introduction of the cameras. Jam Rizvi Jainul, another Facebook respondent said: "The minimum fare must not be hiked to Dh20 after this." 

Benefit to taxi drivers

The plan to introduce CCTV cameras in Dubai taxis will be very beneficial, especially for taxi drivers, said Ahmed Qureishi, a taxi driver with the Dubai Taxi Cooperation.

"Very often we get slapped hefty fines when people complain about taxi drivers driving away without halting. Even when there is a customer in the car, people expect us to stop," said Qureishi. With the cameras, drivers like Qureishi have evidence against the complaints.

Ahmed Zahid, another taxi driver with the corporation said: "Passengers complain about over speeding often. Even when we drive under 100 km/hr. With the cameras, we can now defend our cases."

See the video: http://ktimes.co/taxi

dhanusha@khaleejtimes.com

author

Dhanusha Gokulan

Originally from India, Dhanusha Gokulan has been working as a journalist for 10 years. She has a keen interest in writing about issues that plague the common person and will never turn down a human interest story. She completed her Bachelor in Arts in Journalism, Economics and English Literature from Mangalore University in 2008. In her spare time, she dabbles with some singing/songwriting, loves travelling and Audible is her favourite mobile application. Tweet at her @wordjunkie88


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