From Staff Correspondent
Shillong, June 10 : Owners of three thousand local taxis operating in East Khasi Hills district on Wednesday responded to the show-cause notice served by the Regiol Transport Authority (RTA) for remaining off the road during the bandh called by the proscribed Hynniewtrep tiol Libertaion Council (HNLC) on May 27.
The show-cause notice served by the Commissioner of Transport as well as the RTA is on the basis of the notice served by Meghalaya High Court to the Government as to why it failed to ensure normal life on the day of the bandh.
Adviser to the East Khasi Hills Local Taxi Welfare Association (EKLTWA) Disparsingh Rani said that the taxi owners have collectively given four reasons for remaining off the road on that particular day.
“The first reason is the absence of passengers on the road, secondly the absence of parking lot, the closure of petrol refilling stations and the passenger-sharing system in the city. We were already on the streets but there were no passengers to board and if at all somebody wanted to hire a vehicle for a long distance journey, we were handicapped due to the closure of the fuel refueling outlets,” Rani said.
“Had the local taxis been given a parking lot, it would have not been difficult for the drivers to take the vehicle and park in any desigted parking space to cater to any passenger that needed a conveyance on such days,” he said.
The EKLTWA also forwarded a copy of the reply to show cause notice to the Registrar of the Meghalaya High Court for perusal. The functiories, while saying that the cabs are ready to hit the streets on any given bandh day and to cater the public, another functiory of the association, however, added that It will be futile and run the taxis throughout the day when the members of the public does not venture out and utilize their services.
It may be mentioned that 5700 odd local taxis ply in Shillong and its suburbs every day.