OFFICIALS TO PAVE THE WAY FOR E-BIKE TAXI SERVICES IN BENGALURU
Context: The Transport Department has decided to come out with guidelines to issue permits to allow electric bike taxi operators in the city and fix a fare structure.
This comes after Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa announced in the State Budget that e-bike taxis will be allowed in the city to help improve last-mile connectivity.
- The move is likely to help lakhs of Namma Metro passengers who are looking for economical and hassle-free ways to reach their destinations from stations.
- Electric bikes are environmentally friendly and not expensive as the cost of operations is around 50 paise per kilometre.
- The proposal may face opposition from auto and taxi drivers, and may eat into the revenue of the Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC).
- Providing charging points is very crucial for the success of the project.
- It is very difficult to say how sustainable and effective e-bike taxi services will be for first- and last-mile connectivity.
- A past study indicated that two-wheelers and pedestrians are vulnerable to road accidents.
- The study indicates that 45-50% of road fatalities involve two-wheeler riders. Allowing more bikes on the roads may also increase their vulnerability to road accidents.
- Already bike rental services are being misused in the city
- The safety of women passengers also needs to be considered.