Taxis to have fare meters by March 2013


Frustrated at having had to pay exorbitant fares to taxis and auto rickshaws even for a short distance? Well a transport related government proposal may be something to cheer about. In a move that will bring respite to travellers as well as tourists, the tourist taxis in the state will need to have fare meters in place by March 2013.
Transport department director Arun Desai told TOI that a decision in this regard would be taken in a month's time and by March 31, 2013 all taxis will have to have fare meters in place.
The move is long overdue and is essential with Goa being a tourist destination and tourists usually bearing the brunt of the exorbitant taxi fares. There have been instances reported where taxis have exploited the desperation of tourists to reach a particular destination and charged a whopping 1,000 for a distance of less than 2 kms.
While taxis do not follow the fare meter system, there are a couple of prepaid taxi counters in the state including one at the Dabolim airport in Vasco.
Desai said the South Goa taxi drivers union had agreed to implement the meter system, but in return had demanded that the practice of private cars operating as taxis and eating into their business be stopped. Desai said steps for ending this practice would be taken collectively by the tourism department, transport department and the hotels association.
Desai said the department was keen on getting the meter system implemented throughout the state and would ensure that once a decision in this regard is taken, it would be uniformly implemented. He also said the department was looking at reviving the meter system for auto rickshaws too, and will do so in due course. [TOI]