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Old 18th July 2015, 11:08   #76
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Default Re: Car convoy attacked in Ladakh by taxi mafia!

Has there been any response from GOI or state govt on this ?

Searched twitter, there are a few tweets on this topic, a few re-tweets of this thread but no hash-tag trending etc.
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Old 18th July 2015, 11:11   #77
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Default Re: Car convoy attacked in Ladakh by taxi mafia!

I say, stop the fuel tankers from going there. That can be categorised as peaceful protest against these low-lifes. I think something similar had happened a few years ago in J&K.

I can't imagine someone stopping me crossing into Karnataka from Maharashtra, over any reason. It's my choice to hire a car from Delhi or Kanyakumari, and drive it in any part of this country so long as I am doing so legally. This is within my constitutional rights.

No one asked one third of them to buy taxis. It's a pure and simple business model. If it can't sustain itself, move on to something else.

Unfortunately, due to our unique brand of democracy, the ones who are able to split the people into smaller and smaller groups, are the ones who end up getting elected. It's not the majority, but the majority amongst all the smaller groups.
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Old 18th July 2015, 11:18   #78
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Default Re: Car convoy attacked in Ladakh by taxi mafia!

Quote:
Originally Posted by noopster View Post
Pardon my ignorance but what is this Ranbir Penal Code?
Lots of reference on googling - but none concrete

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ranbir_Penal_Code

http://indianexpress.com/article/new...ction-to-army/

http://www.quora.com/Why-is-the-Indi...mu-and-Kashmir

From what I've read - It is a penal code in J&K, along the lines of our Indian Penal code. IPC does not apply to J&K, it seems

Last edited by mallumowgli : 18th July 2015 at 11:22.
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Old 18th July 2015, 11:30   #79
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Default Re: Car convoy attacked in Ladakh by taxi mafia!

Quote:
Originally Posted by noopster View Post
Pardon my ignorance but what is this Ranbir Penal Code?
For a min i thought the cops name was Ranbir, until google told me this https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ranbir_Penal_Code
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Old 18th July 2015, 12:13   #80
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Default Re: Car convoy attacked in Ladakh by taxi mafia!

FIRST- I condemn the hooliganism.
SECOND- the locals object to taxis from Srinagar and Manali doing their 'inner routes' so this is a known fact and they have been known to obstruct and delay such vehicles.
I have travelled with a MH private number plat vehicle without even getting a second glance at my Scorpio here just a few years ago, and then again with a group of 70+ riders last year.
Such trouble should have been anticipated when taking along vehicles of disparate registrations to Leh. Homework of what works in the areas you will travel helps.
I repeat- in no way I even sympathise with the locals for this damage, which could easily have gotten out of hand, endangering lives, as if it already did not, spoil the tourism experience and for all the crap they epouse about the Buddha and peace, its such a let down.
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Old 18th July 2015, 12:22   #81
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Default Re: Car convoy attacked in Ladakh by taxi mafia!

These guys follow Ranbir (or what ever) penal code but the central govt proposes to give a package of 1L crores from tax paid by hardworking tax payers else where. What an irony?? I don't have anything against people of north east and some Himalayan states. But can any one overlook this hypocrisy, they can flood every other part of the country for jobs and better prospects. But people from rest of India needs inner line permit even to visit these states forget owning land or property. Now they cannot even drive around freely or fearlessly..!!


I agree that some kind of restrictions should be in place to protect these pristine places against gross commercialization, but these guys are taking this too far. The media should highlight this issue with the same vigor they highlighted the racial attacks on our north eastern friends. There is no much difference in both these cases.

Last edited by poloman : 18th July 2015 at 12:32.
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Old 18th July 2015, 13:41   #82
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Default Re: Car convoy attacked in Ladakh by taxi mafia!

This is sheer madness! How can they stop us from driving in a part of our own country?! Have written a news article about it and have requested a few friends from other publications to do the same.

Lets hope the issue is highlighted enough and the higher authorities read the same and act on it. Until then, will keep discouraging known people from venturing out to the area.
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Old 18th July 2015, 13:47   #83
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Default Re: Car convoy attacked in Ladakh by taxi mafia!

Quote:
Originally Posted by sudev View Post
Okay there appears to be another side of the story. As per some inputs from one who was part of convoy there was a "bandh" announced for July 11 & 12th. SO the incident was probably not related to just taxi union.

Though why should bandh's be allowed to disrupt common mans life is itself a matter of concern but this is widespread and prevalent behavior across the country.
My friends were part of the convoy as well. I just got lucky to not be there at the time.
There are lots of stories floating about - starting with the bandh, to a local taxi driver and a self drive driver having a verbal altercation and the mob fury coming out on all self-drive rentals.
Rumour has it that after we left, they stopped private vehicles as well and if your name & the name on the RC didn't match (or you weren't a close relative), you would be hassled as well.

Irrespective, this is an 'attempt to murder' if I could call it that - and I have my reasons based on what I heard from my friends (some of whom are BHPians and I am sure will post on it themselves). Throwing boulder sized rocks, attacking the passengers with iron rods, etc.

Heck! An iron rod pierced through the metal of the Duster! Just a few inches here or there and it would have probably struck my friend on the back seat!

Car convoy attacked in Ladakh by taxi mafia!-img_4079.jpg

God was on their side that day, and everyone made it out safely.
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Old 18th July 2015, 14:27   #84
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Default Re: Car convoy attacked in Ladakh by taxi mafia!

This is a despicable act of vandalism and strong-arm tactics by a group with vested interests - no two ways about that.

However, I would request you for certain clarifications regarding the sequence of events:
Quote:
Originally Posted by ashnd View Post
...a convoy of 15 vehicles which also had two self-drive rental vehicles.
Which make of vehicles were these? From which self-drive company? Were all members of the convoy connected / related / friendly with each other? Were you travelling as a convoy from Delhi itself?
Quote:
Unaware of the goings on and the extent to which these taxi union people could go to, all 15 vehicles did the local sightseeing circuit. On our way back from Pangong Lake, the two self-drive vehicles were stopped. Their windows were smashed, a huge stone was smashed onto the bonnet and iron rods were used to pierce the bodywork.
I understand that taxiwalas tried to wave down your convoy while proceeding towards Chang La / Pangong, to prevent you from going there. But the convoy did not stop. Why not? You already knew that the taxiwalas did not want the rental vehicles to proceed towards Pangong, didn't you?
Quote:
We sensed something was amiss when we reached the spot and having no other option, we carried on calmly through the crowd gathered on both sides.
So, with your private registration plates, you were not targeted at all at this time.
Quote:
Unfortunately, there was a jam at the Karu roundabout and two of our cars stopped.
Which two - the self-drive rentals? Or ones with private plates?
Quote:
I saw the crowd running towards us in the rear view mirror and we managed to escape as soon as one of them kicked our rear bumper.
So the crowd you mention above was very near the Karu roundabout? And they chased you after you had crossed them without being targeted? Or do you think they were trying to chase and stop the rental cars specifically?
Quote:
The other car ahead of us was not as lucky and had their rear windscreen smashed. They however managed to reverse and escape.
Was this a rental car or a privately registered car? Please post pics of damage to the rental cars as well.
Quote:
We then regrouped further ahead and decided to take our stickers off.
What stickers?
Quote:
One by one, ALL our private vehicles were stoned and attacked.
Was there any conversation / communication involved between yourselves and the crowd, before they attacked the private vehicles?
Quote:
Three in our convoy sustained minor injuries. We were fortunate that no-one was seriously hurt. We had to nearly ram our way through the crowd. Fortunately they parted and we were able to escape.
So they were not actually trying to physically harm persons, but their primary focus was on damaging the vehicles. Any minor injury was essentially collateral damage. Is that correct?
Quote:
A policeman was standing in front of the crowd and gesturing for us to stop rather than controlling the crowd.
But you chose to ignore the policeman's gesture.
Quote:
We were discouraged from registering an FIR and did not see any concrete action being taken against the offenders.
This was at the Leh police station? How long after the stoning incident?
Quote:
We had to leave Leh the a day later under police escort.
Did anyone specifically request / order you to leave? Or you chose to leave on your own? But then you mention you spent the next day replacing some of the broken windshields.
Quote:
Originally Posted by ashnd View Post
  • The Military Police were very helpful the next day and organised car workshops to be opened on the next day which happened to be a Sunday. We were able to replace some of the broken windscreens this way.
Quote:
...all through the route, the taxi drivers were tail-gating us and coming onto our side of the road, just to cause an accident and to instigate us into getting into a tussle with them.
When was this? At the time of going to Leh, on the way to Pangong, on the way back from Pangong, or on the way back from Leh?
Quote:
I would advise extreme caution when travelling to Leh in the near future even if going by private vehicle. Please do not even consider taking a self-drive rental to this part of the country under the present circumstances.
Rental vehicles, i.e. chauffeured taxis, from both Srinagar and Manali had always been allowed free movement between these cities and Leh. And it has been the case for many many years that these taxis were blocked from going towards Pangong / Nubra by the Leh Tax Union - or for that matter, Manali-registered taxis were prevented from going towards Kargil, and Srinagar-registered taxis stopped from proceeding down the Leh-Manali highway. The drivers of these cars are already aware that not obeying this diktat leads to damaged cars, and do not try to go beyond certain road limits.

The self-drive rental reaching Leh is a new phenomenon, and the taxi union wants that the same limit applies for these vehicles too, since they are, by definition, taxis from outside Ladakh. But the people at the wheel, i.e. people like us, have different thoughts and ideas, that differ from the mindset of the Srinagar / Manali taxi drivers. Their attempts to peaceably prevent these taxis from proceeding to Nubra / Pangong are ignored, the cars hide in convoys of private-registered vehicles and try to slip past the taxi union people's roadblocks/checkpoints, and then the unionwalas resort to strong-arm tactics to catch them on the way back, and teach them a lesson.

Till today, not a single private-registered vehicle has been stopped or vandalized, whether travelling individually or in convoys. The trouble only begins with vehicles bearing yellow plates with black digits, or black plates with yellow digits - and if one forces a confrontation, well, similar confrontations will happen. As I said before, This is a despicable act of vandalism and strong-arm tactics by a group with vested interests - no two ways about that. I don't support this in any way, but then, as travellers, we do need to conform to local rules, whether written or unwritten.

Last edited by SS-Traveller : 18th July 2015 at 14:36.
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Old 18th July 2015, 14:38   #85
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Default Re: Car convoy attacked in Ladakh by taxi mafia!

Quote:
Originally Posted by SS-Traveller View Post
As I said before, This is a despicable act of vandalism and strong-arm tactics by a group with vested interests - no two ways about that. I don't support this in any way, but then, as travellers, we do need to conform to local rules, whether written or unwritten.
I deplore the violence, but this is well said, SS Traveller. I have travelled a lot in the West Bengal/Sikkim hills, both in my own vehicle and rented jeeps and cars. And there are places you reach and the hotel/agent insists you take a local taxi for "sight seeing." I find nothing wrong with it. It is a source of livelihood for them folks and has been for many years. It is a way to support the local economy and catch up on the local gossip too.
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Old 18th July 2015, 14:40   #86
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Angry Re: Car convoy attacked in Ladakh by taxi mafia!

Quote:
Originally Posted by ashnd View Post
I would advise extreme caution when travelling to Leh in the near future even if going by private vehicle. Please do not even consider taking a self-drive rental to this part of the country under the present circumstances.
We're just finalizing a travel to Leh using 2 private vehicles and find this really scary!

Also there seems to be NO mention of this incidence in any "mainline" media, only automotive related websites, mostly referring to this particular Team BHP entry.

Would recommend a Facebook Page be created reusing the content posted here and we can start tagging and sharing across.

Tried searching for official contacts for Ladakh and there is only one which I found, and that too a gmail ID: ticleh1@gmail.com at http://leh.nic.in/pages/contact.html. May be worthwhile to share with them, though it is more a hit-or-miss I guess.

This is shameful and discouraging.
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Old 18th July 2015, 14:47   #87
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Default Re: Car convoy attacked in Ladakh by taxi mafia!

Err, what are "local rules" ? If folks want economic protection, let them ask for changes done lawfully.

These are underdeveloped regions, and money from taxpayers kitty ( like me ) go to develop these regions. I'm happy to follow their "local rules" so long as not a single paisa from my tax money is spent on these areas . Fair enough ?
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Old 18th July 2015, 15:09   #88
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Default Re: Car convoy attacked in Ladakh by taxi mafia!

What local rules? So tomorrow local hotel union comes up with a rule no pitching tent anywhere, eatery union- one can not bring grub from outside, Chemist Union- One can not carry his/her medi from outside Leh. Where does this stop?

Are we living in a Banana Republic or what? Can not drive in KA in outside vehicle without coughing up life time road tax, need permits to visit NE. All in the name of Local Rules. What if tomorrow Punjab/Haryana comes up with a rule, you need to pay up big amount to drive till mountains, again in the name o local rules?
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Old 18th July 2015, 15:17   #89
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Default Re: Car convoy attacked in Ladakh by taxi mafia!

Quote:
Originally Posted by SS-Traveller View Post
we do need to conform to local rules, whether written or unwritten.
I will make an "unwritten rule" that you cannot drive your car through Delhi till the time you hire a Delhi driver.. how does that sound ?

Rules cannot be unwritten ! Rules should be concise, clear and unambiguous and clearly mentioned !! People cannot have their own interpretation of rules.
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Old 18th July 2015, 15:30   #90
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Default Re: Car convoy attacked in Ladakh by taxi mafia!

Sad. Very Sad. Many years back, 2009-10, Sikkim had witnessed some animosity towards non "SK" registered tourist vehicles. But it never took such an ugly turn. A friend of mine used to work in the Sikkimese Government and he told me, that they swiftly stepped in to prevent further trouble brewing and the situation was nipped in the bud. Everything was normalised.
This kind of a situation requires political intervention to get resolved. I doubt it will be solved if its left to its own devices.
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