Government Rules in India Regarding Ola and Uber

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In India, the ministry of road transport has issued guidelines for ride hailing services such as Uber (Uber Technlologies Inc.) and Ola (ANI Technologies Pvt. Ltd), classifying them as on-demand information technology-based transportation aggregators and not taxi companies, although it is up to the states to accept or object this.

The guidelines come as a shot in the arm for Ola and Uber that have all along claimed that they serve as a bridge between passengers and drivers by leveraging technology, and are therefore not taxi companies.

Mint has reviewed the guidelines.

According to them, the aggregators must not own or lease any vehicle, employ any drivers or represent themselves as a taxi service, unless also registered as a taxi operator. In some countries, this kind of policy is not necessary, like in Netherlands, with their taxi Schiphol

Taxi operators are to maintain a minimum fleet size, office space and parking space for all taxis, among other requirements.

The ministry’s guidelines should clear the air surrounding ride-hailing services after a driver hailed through the Uber app raped a woman passenger in December 2014.

“The government should draw a fine balance on how to regulate these companies. The state government’s guidelines would be an additional layer of regulatory requirements,” said Sandeep Ladda, partner and national leader of the technology and e-commerce practice at PricewaterhouseCoopers India.

The Maharashtra government has issued a City Taxi Scheme 2015, encompassing taxi service providers as well as aggregators of taxis, which could deal a blow to Ola and Uber. The regulations state that licensees should maintain a fleet of a minimum 1,000 and a maximum of 4,000 taxis, a cap which may restrict the businesses from scaling up in Mumbai, a key market.

To be sure, neither Ola nor Uber forces drivers to put in fixed hours or prevent them from being present on multiple platforms. However, a majority of the drivers are drawn towards these platforms for incentives, which are over and above the fare charged from the passengers. The companies have incentive structures based on the number of rides, which depend on the number of hours put in by the drivers as more rides require longer hours.

Trump’s Frequent Racist-Tweets are Endangering the Minority Population in the U.S.

Donald Trump, despite being the holder of the highest office in the U.S. has become more aggressive and dangerous in expressing his dislike for the non-white minority population of the country. As days and political activities advance toward the 2020 presidential elections; or toward Trump’s possible impeachment before the presidential elections, he has been unleashing double-edged racist slurs one after another.

Although many perceive it as Trump’s way of rousing support from his white-supremacist supporters, minority groups are also concerned that his racist attacks are endangering their safety as citizens of the U.S. Attacks that even lawmakers are not spared, since 4 women Democratic House Representatives and Democratic House Committee Chairman Representative Elijah Cummings, all of color, were not spared.

If no less than the president of the U.S. is tweeting and mouthing hate remarks directed at respected and prominent elected officials, then his supporters will likely feel justified to follow their leader.

Trump denies being a racist, which drew affirmation from websites frequented by his white supremacist supportes, including the openly neo-Nazis. He also elicited chants of “send her back” during his speech in his rally in Greenville, North Carolina, in support of his verbal attacks against Congresswoman Ilhan Omar, one of the House Representatives making up The Squad. In fact, after his attention-calling racist tweets in July, Trump enjoyed an increased approval rating coming from Republican voters.

Will Increased Approval Rating also Mean More White Supremacist Violence?

Ordinary non-white citizens feel they are no longer safe, as some are already looking into installing CCTV cameras in their homes as added protection. They are well aware of the importance of elections, and what some candidates are capable of doing just to get the vote they need to get elected or at worst, be re-elected in their current government positions.

There is no telling what deplorable acts of terrorism white supremacist fanatics will do, in order to prevent members of the minority groups from casting votes that could unseat Trump. They have been emboldened by Trump’s statement of “I don’t know if I can stop them (Trump supporters).” After all, the statement suggests that when it comes to imposing anti-racist laws, Trump becomes less aggressive.

Remember the Charlottesville incident in 2017? It involved a neo-Nazi rallyist who drove his car right into the group of counterprotesters voicing disapproval over white supremacists taking to the streets to promote Nazi ideology. The incident resulted to the deaths of a counterprotester named Heather Heyer and two police officers, and the life imprisonment of the neo-Nazi attacker, James Alex Fields, Jr.

The sad part about this incident is that Donald Trump still called the white supremacist rallyists as a bunch of “fine people”.

Installing surveillance cameras not only in homes but all over a community is one good way of monitoring people who may have intentions of doing harm. It is not uncommon for acts of aggression to happen especially when an election period draws near. In Texas and Chicago, surveillance cameras are installed in polling places to ensure, not only the integrity of the voting process that transpires, but also to heighten the security.

As a note, those interested to heed the advice of security service providers will find bargain deals for surveillance cameras at the Amazon Great Indian Sale on Electronics.