Goa taxi strike ends after delegation meets Manohar Parrikar, gets more time to install speed governors

Panaji: Three days after they went on a strike to protest against a rule to compulsorily install speed governors, tourist taxi operators in Goa on Sunday withdrew the protest on an assurance from the state government. BJP legislator Michael Lobo brokered peace between the agitators and the state government.

According to the North Goa Tourist Taxi Owners Association, a delegation of taxi owners, led by Lobo, met Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar this afternoon and secured the assurance that fitness certificates would be issued for taxis by 24 January, without installing speed governors.

The tourist taxi operators have been on a strike since Friday to protest the government's rule making it mandatory for their vehicles to have speed governors.

The BJP-led government had refused to exempt the tourist taxi operators from the rule citing a Supreme Court order.

The government had said that taxis without the speed-limiting gadgets will not be issued fitness certificates by the Transport Department from 24 February.

Representational image. Reuters

Representational image. Reuters

Absence of taxis inconvenienced tourists visiting the coastal state which is witnessing peak tourist season.

"The chief minister has assured to give fitness certificate to all taxi vehicles by 24 January," North Goa Tourist Taxi Owners Association General Secretary Vinayak Nanoskar said while addressing agitators at Azad Maidan in Panaji.

He said the order asking the state Transport department to issue fitness certificates would be issued within two days.

"Based on the assurance given by the chief minister, the agitators have decided to withdraw the strike," Nanoskar said.

Lobo told agitators that he would quit the government if it fails to fulfill the promise made by the chief minister.

The strike crippled the tourism industry for the last three days even as state government initiated some measures to ease the situation.

State-run Kadamba Transport Corporation Limited's buses were pressed into service to cater to tourists at various places, including the airport and railway stations.

In the absence of tourist taxis, hotels have failed to arrange for any transport for their guests, who have to manage on their own to reach their destinations.

Updated Date: Jan 22, 2018 06:54 AM

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