The Busy Brains
13 Jun 2023
The Supreme Court has reinstated the ban on bike taxis in Delhi, delivering a blow to ride-hailing giants Uber and Ola. The court's decision came in response to petitions filed by the Delhi government, challenging the High Court's order. As a result, bike-taxi aggregators will have to wait for the implementation of a new policy before resuming operations in Delhi.
In a significant setback for ride-hailing giants Uber and Ola, the Supreme Court of India has revived the ban on bike taxis in Delhi. The court's decision was made during the hearing of two separate petitions filed by the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government, aiming to challenge the High Court's order from May 26.
The High Court had previously allowed bike-taxi aggregators like Rapido and Uber to operate in the national capital, provided that the Delhi government refrained from taking any coercive action until a new policy was formulated. However, a vacation bench comprising Justices Aniruddha Bose and Rajesh Bindal stayed the High Court's order, granting the aggregators the opportunity to seek an urgent hearing of their plea from the Delhi High Court.
During the hearing, the counsel representing the Delhi government assured the bench that the final policy would be notified by the end of July. This means that the bike-taxi aggregators will have to wait for the policy's implementation before they can resume operations in Delhi.
The Supreme Court's decision was prompted by the AAP government's plea challenging the High Court's order, which had prohibited the government from taking any coercive action against the bike-taxi aggregators until the final policy was notified. Last week, the top court also sought a response from the Central government regarding the pleas filed by the Delhi government.
In May, the Delhi government approved the Motor Vehicle Aggregator Scheme 2023, which aims to regulate cab aggregators and delivery service providers in the city. The policy includes notable features such as mandatory panic buttons in taxis, integration with the emergency number '112,' and a gradual transition to electric vehicles.
The Motor Vehicle Aggregator Scheme 2023 applies to individuals or entities operating or managing a fleet of motor vehicles through digital or electronic means, connecting drivers offering transportation or delivery services with passengers, sellers, e-commerce entities, or consignors.
With the Supreme Court reinstating the ban on bike taxis, Uber, Ola, and other similar aggregators will have to wait for the final policy's implementation before resuming their services in Delhi. This decision deals a significant blow to these companies, leaving them with no choice but to comply with the court's ruling and await the finalization of the regulatory framework.