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Kerala CM Pinarayi Vijayan launches state govt's own e-taxi service app

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Thiruvananthapuram, Aug 17: In a first, Kerala government has launched its own e-taxi service app named 'Kerala Savari'on Wednesday.

Chief Minister Vijayan flagged off app where auto-rickshaws will operate under the new online taxi hiring service that has been rolled out by the state Labour Department. Under the new initiative, the objective is to link the existing autorickshaw-taxi networks in Kerala with an aim to ensure safe and dispute-free travel for the public at affordable rates prevailing in the state.

Kerala CM Pinarayi Vijayan launches state govts own e-taxi service app

This is for the first time where a state government has launched a e-taxi service app.

It is also envisaged as a helping hand to the autorickshaw-taxi labour sector, which is facing several challenges, the government had said last month when it had announced the launch of the service. The government had said it has been learnt that there was a difference of 20-30 per cent between the rate received by the motor transport labourers and the rate charged from the passengers in all the existing online cab services.

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As people prefer to use online taxi services, many of the conventional taxi stands have disappeared and a large number of motor transport workers have been rendered jobless, the government had said. The Kerala Motor Transport Workers' Welfare Fund Board is the implementation agency, which would act with the support of the departments like Legal Metrology, Transport, IT, Police and so on.

Kerala Savari would charge only eight per cent service charge in addition to the rate fixed by the government, which was 20 to 30 per cent in other online taxis, the government had said. The amount, collected as service charge, would be utilised for the project implementation and promotional incentives for passengers and drivers, it added.

A police clearance certificate has been made mandatory for drivers joining the scheme and the app also has the feature of a 'panic button' which can be used in case there is any accident or another similar danger. "It has been decided to implement the scheme across the state. At present, as many as 500 auto-taxi drivers in the Thiruvananthapuram Corporation limits are the members of the scheme. Officials of various departments have imparted training to them in various subjects," the government had said.

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