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Old 25th February 2017, 22:32   #76
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Default Re: Uber, Ola drivers unhappy with remuneration, to go on strike

All investment products have to clearly mention the risks to the potential investor. How come Ola/Uber can get away without stating such risks before signing up a driver? Instead they run a massive ad campaigns stating how their drivers are making big bucks. They pretty much duped the drivers into buying a new car and facilitating the purchase, etc. Once they have the drivers at their mercy, they roll our their own fleet of cars who get preference over the owner-drivers. Anybody with common sense can see what is going on here. When the govt doesn't catch up with regulation on newer business models, corporates exploit and plunder.

I have no problem with dynamic pricing, drivers making less money, etc. but many drivers are duped into debt/liability they didn't fully understand.

Edit: There are a lot of fin-tech companies cropping up with the intended goal of offering easy credit at the click of a button. Apparently a significant percentage of smartphones are bought on EMI schemes. My point is there should be a check on companies that are driving poor people into debt.

Last edited by ajmat : 26th February 2017 at 17:12.
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Old 27th February 2017, 18:12   #77
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Default Re: Uber, Ola drivers unhappy with remuneration, to go on strike

Message from Uber Bangalore:

"My name is xxxxxxx, General Manager of Uber in Bangalore.
Earlier last week, a small group of people began preventing driver-partners from going about their business, and preventing riders from getting their usual reliable and affordable Uber at a tap of a button.

The Honorable Karnataka High Court, this morning, issued an injunction against all identified/unidentified miscreants who have been involved in illegal activities, involving obstructing our driver partners from driving and snatching their mobile devices across the city.
We welcome the court order, and hope that it will enable drivers to get back behind the wheel and earn an honest living, something many have been telling us they wish to do.
We also hope that the law enforcement authorities will take serious cognizance of our concerns, voiced through this court order and take appropriate action against these trouble-makers.

Me and the entire Uber team in Bangalore are truly sorry for the inconvenience you, our riders, are experiencing.
We want to assure you that we are working hard with the authorities to ensure driver-partners are able to get back behind the wheel and Bangaloreans can get back to pushing a button and getting a ride."
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Old 27th February 2017, 19:13   #78
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Default Re: Uber, Ola drivers unhappy with remuneration, to go on strike

Last Thursday (23rd), There was a gang of OLA / Uber drivers who were looking out for cabs that were not participating in the strike. They were peeking into every yellow cab doing trips, I guess to make sure they are not on OLA / Uber strike. This was on the Doddakanelli road, at Devarbisnahalli.
The same day, parents had to leave the city. I couldn't find any cabs in the evening. Eventually I dropped them at KR puram Station. And there wasn't much traffic though.

I really hope Ola and Uber survive this. They have 'democratized' cab services; the ability to travel at almost anytime at reasonable rates and most times cashless were a real plus. And as mentioned before, its not really Rs 6 per km that we pay, the ride time charges and base fare pegs it high.
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Old 27th February 2017, 19:25   #79
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Default Re: Uber, Ola drivers unhappy with remuneration, to go on strike

My friend took an Uber from Ramaiah hospital to come to central Bangalore. The cab was stopped by a group of miscreants, ten minutes into the ride. The driver told my friend to get off and take an Auto as these guys won't let him proceed with a customer. This is plain holliganism now. They can strike if they want but they have no right to prevent others from working or joining their strike.
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Old 27th February 2017, 19:35   #80
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Default Re: Uber, Ola drivers unhappy with remuneration, to go on strike

Quote:
Originally Posted by androdev View Post
All investment products have to clearly mention the risks to the potential investor. How come Ola/Uber can get away without stating such risks before signing up a driver?
Are you sure the risks are not mentioned anywhere? I doubt any of this would have prevented these drivers from running after easy money.


Quote:
Originally Posted by androdev View Post
Instead they run a massive ad campaigns stating how their drivers are making big bucks. They pretty much duped the drivers into buying a new car and facilitating the purchase, etc.
Anyone can run such campaigns. In fact most companies still do. Falling for it is your fault.

Believing that one can continue to earn such big bucks perpetually with only taxi driving skills is gullible.


Quote:
Originally Posted by androdev View Post
Once they have the drivers at their mercy, they roll our their own fleet of cars who get preference over the owner-drivers.
I have only heard about this from drivers' protests. No way to verify if these allegations are true.

Quote:
Originally Posted by androdev View Post
Anybody with common sense can see what is going on here. When the govt doesn't catch up with regulation on newer business models, corporates exploit and plunder.
Govt regulations are there in place and since these are new age business models, govts are only reacting. This is more or less happening all over the world.

Had there been govt regulations for each and every of these new age models I don't think there would ever be any Uber, Ola or for that matter any innovation.


I support their effort, sweat and hard work. Only thing I am against, is their greed.

Last edited by fordday : 27th February 2017 at 19:36. Reason: Additional info
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Old 27th February 2017, 21:29   #81
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Default Re: Uber, Ola drivers unhappy with remuneration, to go on strike

Quote:
Originally Posted by androdev View Post
All investment products have to clearly mention the risks to the potential investor.
They do. It's called 'Terms and Conditions'. How many of us actually bother to read those.

Quote:
How come Ola/Uber can get away without stating such risks before signing up a driver?
Uber/Ola too have a T&C page. And no one's getting away with anything. Giving incentives/discounts is completely up to them. They never promised that they'll keep giving them forever.

Quote:
Instead they run a massive ad campaigns stating how their drivers are making big bucks.
Their drivers did make big bucks. And they are continuing to do so. Just that they don't make as much as some did during the initial days and some don't make as much as they thought they would.

They are running an ad campaign to launch a new service. What else would you have them say? "Hey take a look at our new service! There's a chance that you may fail, theres a chance that you may not make a lot of money, theres a chance that you may get into debt, but hey, try our service anyway!"

Quote:
They pretty much duped the drivers into buying a new car and facilitating the purchase, etc.
They never asked the drivers to buy a new car. And banks help people buy cars, property etc. Can you blame the banks if you cant make payment and they foreclose?

Quote:
Once they have the drivers at their mercy, they roll our their own fleet of cars who get preference over the owner-drivers.
I dont think Uber has their own cars. If yes, can you please quote some credible sources?

Quote:
Anybody with common sense can see what is going on here.
Bunch of people got greedy. What else is going on here?


Quote:
When the govt doesn't catch up with regulation on newer business models, corporates exploit and plunder.
Just like how the autowallahs and local taxis used to 'exploit and plunder' us?

Quote:
I have no problem with dynamic pricing, drivers making less money, etc.
That kinda negates the rest of your post doesnt it?

Quote:
but many drivers are duped into debt/liability they didn't fully understand.
And whose fault is that?

Quote:
Edit: There are a lot of fin-tech companies cropping up with the intended goal of offering easy credit at the click of a button.
Its a free market.

Quote:
Apparently a significant percentage of smartphones are bought on EMI schemes.
Is there any verifiable statistic?

Quote:
My point is there should be a check on companies that are driving poor people into debt.
People willingly take credit cards and loans. No ones held a knife to my throat and forced me to take a credit card. If not the company's fault if people don't understand the risks.

This is a business, not a charity. They will do whatever they can to maximize their profits. Joining Uber is like setting up your own business. It's your duty to understand the risks. They dont have to come to your doorsteps to take classes. They are dealing with grown men, not children who were promised candy. Yes there are plenty of people who've gotten themselves into a pickle. And there are plenty of people who've been cautious, got an older vehicle, got into Uber part time keeping their main jobs and so forth. Unfortunately thats the sad part of being an adult, you have to take responsibility for your own actions.
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Old 27th February 2017, 23:05   #82
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Default Re: Uber, Ola drivers unhappy with remuneration, to go on strike

Folks, it's not like I don't understand the free economy stuff. There is a huge debate around Uber-Driver relationship on the issues of social security, employee benefits, etc. So they are definitely operating on the fringes of established principles of free economy - there is no other company like Uber that has seen such widespread protests all over the world against their business model. Uber can't wait to roll out self-driving cars to get out of this controversial business model.

Particularly in the Indian context, we are talking about semi-literate folks who are taking 10L worth loans as a result of cleverly designed campaigns. Such huge loans are going to wreck their families.

If we set aside the empathy or hatred towards drivers, what this means is Uber like service costs more without VC subsidy. Drivers are disenchanted already and will result in poorer service almost on par with old-school taxi. Cheap + polite + convenient Uber ride will become just convenient to the customer in near future. India has no scope for self-driving cars, so India-only operator Ola will have a tough time in the long run.
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Old 27th February 2017, 23:22   #83
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I can confirm that Ola has been purchasing cars in their name recently. Not sure about Uber as their model everywhere is just as an aggregator.

While this may be a contention with the current driver-partners, most of them are protesting not because of drastic decrease in income, but because they didn't save any money from before.

When ola/uber were doling out benefits, the partners were on a spending spree - new phone, car accessories, new cars etc. Instead of having one car running the whole day shared between 2 drivers, people bought 2 cars and ran them each with a single driver.

These aggregators, especially Uber make highly efficient use of resources. My driver tells me on most days he gets a trip immediately after he ends the current trip. At times even before he's dropped off the customer, he's got the next pickup. Cars run less kms empty, and the partners can minimise wastage.

The current scenario feels bad for current partners as they are used to getting a very high income compared to their expenses. But even now I feel it's still a good business for partner-drivers.
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Old 28th February 2017, 01:22   #84
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Default Re: Uber, Ola drivers unhappy with remuneration, to go on strike

In the quiet city of Kolkata, a quiet change is going on. People have started wondering why they own cars at all.

Until recently, one owned a car based on three models :

1. Own the car and employ a full time driver.
2. Own the car and engage a part-time driver as and when you need the car.
3. Own the car and drive it yourself.

All three models are going out of the window because :

a.) The cost per KM on all 3 models exceeds Rs 15/KM, even for a small car, mainly because of the fixed costs of depreciation, road tax, maintenance, capital cost of having a garage etc.
b.) There is no space to park a car anywhere in the business district, and hence driving a car to work is rarely possible.

People are realising that they do not need to own a car at all. There is Uber, Ola, plus several other car-hire services. Getting an Uber in Kolkata takes 5 minutes or less, and you can pre-book an Uber as well. The maximum cost is Rs 200 for a trip anywhere in Kolkata, from A to B, given that distances are small (apart from the Airport, of course)

Of course, there is the non-monetary feeling of having one's own car, being able to drive a car whenever one wants etc. When self-drive cars enter Kolkata, this need will be met, too.

The problems regarding drivers, and the arrangements Uber have with them, will be sorted out. The ultimate force will be public demand.
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Old 28th February 2017, 10:01   #85
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Default Re: Uber, Ola drivers unhappy with remuneration, to go on strike

To start with, Bangalore roads have become really good to drive with so many cabs going off the road. That itself shows how aggressively the number of cabs have grown and what effect they have on traffic.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fordday View Post
Anyone can run such campaigns. In fact most companies still do. Falling for it is your fault.

I support their effort, sweat and hard work. Only thing I am against, is their greed.


Greed is the word to represent the current situation. The very reason this strike is happening is because the earnings of the drivers have been coming down. I am not saying that the companies are not at fault. They are - for taking in too many cabs very aggressively. However, is the supply more than the demand? That should be analysed. If it is indeed true that there are too many cabs for less people, then yes, the companies are at fault. However, since the numbers/stats are not available, we cannot comment on that.

Coming to the drivers, I have heard enough stories from drivers, happy, sad, scammed and so. A majority of the drivers I have spoken to have made good money in the early months of 2016. So much that they could clear existing loans, do crazy shopping, have swanky phones, watches and go on weekend trips with family. But this was merely a bonus. This kind of remuneration never would have been a part of the service agreement. Hence, the drivers should reap the additional benefits when offered and not assume that to be permanent. Talk about the agreement, and how many drivers have given in efforts to understand that? Majority would have not given two hoots to the terms and conditions. Is it not the responsibility of the drivers to have done this?

In India, paperwork is damned. Need to open a Bank account? "Saar two photo and 5 signs, here, here, there, there, one across, OK saar, two days I give you account". Thats what happened with these aggregators too. All the drivers cared about is getting the phone and driving off. Did it end there? No. They were greedy for the incentives and they only drove for that. Very few actually cared about offering quality service barring the bonus they would get end of the day. And this includes luring innocent friends/family from villages to come to cities and start driving all because they would get referral bonuses too.

I have heard stories from drivers who have sold their farms and stopped agri businesses to buy a car and drive for Ola or Uber. The reason to do this? Some idiot came to their village in a spanking new car, with posh clothes and treated them with great food and liquid, told them they could do this too and encouraged them to start driving a cab in a city. This idiot did it for a sum of money. Uber and Ola never did this directly, they just sat back and enjoyed the ever increasing footfall and boasted about expanding market share. If the existing drivers were so much concerned about their future, the referral scheme should have tanked. But no, when you are getting money why bother about tomorrow?

Quote:
Originally Posted by GeneralJazz View Post
They do. It's called 'Terms and Conditions'. How many of us actually bother to read those.

Uber/Ola too have a T&C page. And no one's getting away with anything. Giving incentives/discounts is completely up to them. They never promised that they'll keep giving them forever.

I dont think Uber has their own cars. If yes, can you please quote some credible sources?

People willingly take credit cards and loans. No ones held a knife to my throat and forced me to take a credit card. If not the company's fault if people don't understand the risks.

This is a business, not a charity. They will do whatever they can to maximize their profits. Joining Uber is like setting up your own business. It's your duty to understand the risks. They dont have to come to your doorsteps to take classes. They are dealing with grown men, not children who were promised candy.
I read in the paper yesterday that Uber does rent cars to drivers at 900/day. One of such cars which was within the compound of their Bengaluru office was torched.

Indeed, they will do whatever they want to remain in the game. The current war in the court and Injunction against the drivers itself shows how adamant these companies are. It will not be a surprise if the companies begin to get some backup drivers and deploy them to please customers. I just hope the drivers who actually want to work and earn money are let to do their job without hindrance. The protesting drivers are the ones who dont seem to be under the burden of EMIs or maintaining a family/commitments. The ones who actually need money are suffering due to these strikes.
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Old 28th February 2017, 10:35   #86
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Default Re: Uber, Ola drivers unhappy with remuneration, to go on strike

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Originally Posted by audioholic View Post
To start with, Bangalore roads have become really good to drive with so many cabs going off the road. That itself shows how aggressively the number of cabs have grown and what effect they have on traffic.



Greed is the word to represent the current situation. The very reason this strike is happening is because the earnings of the drivers have been coming down.
They were greedy for the incentives and they only drove for that. Very few actually cared about offering quality service barring the bonus they would get at end of the day. And this includes luring innocent friends/family from villages to come to cities and start driving all because they would get referral bonuses too.

I have heard stories from drivers who have sold their farms and stopped agri business to buy a car and drive for Ola or Uber. The reason to do this? Some idiot came to their village in a spanking new car, with posh clothes and treated them with great food and liquid, told them they could do this too and encouraged them to start driving a cab in a city. This idiot did it for a sum of money.

I just hope the drivers who actually want to work and earn money are let to do their job without hindrance. The ones who actually need money are suffering due to these strikes.
Spot on analysis, the protesting drivers are mostly from the elite class who were minting money with fake trips. Since they are not ready to work for 8+ hours now they have started to protest against Ola and Uber. I should mention special thanks to BTP and RTO for conducting surprise checks on these cabs based on our tip off's. Last week Koramangala police immediately swing into action when I raised a complaint against the protesting drivers. I strongly support that the rowdy elements amongst the drivers are terminated and other innocent drivers are allowed to drive. The other menace is from the people who have invested in Ola Cabs and forcing drivers to complete 18 trips in a day. The drivers are paid Rs.80 per trip and their badge and display cards are held back as security by investors. Ola and Uber should only promote only driver cum owner concept.
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Old 28th February 2017, 15:32   #87
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Default Re: Uber, Ola drivers unhappy with remuneration, to go on strike

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.....we are talking about semi-literate folks who are taking 10L worth loans as a result of cleverly designed campaigns. Such huge loans are going to wreck their families.....
How is that any different from any class of people with varied degrees of literacy/intelligence/maturity taking on a multitude of loans they can neither understand nor afford? There are a million lures enticing us wherever we look, every single advertisement is a 'cleverly designed campaign' to entice us to part with money we don't have or can't afford to spend, so should we all start claiming refunds and better deals because we couldn't or didn't do our bit of due diligence?

A lot of these chaps bit off more than they can chew for a variety of reasons, but there are a lot of them that kept their heads and stayed sane too. I actually posted an example of one such driver myself a couple pages ago. There are plenty of others.

Aren't unions supposed to care for their members' welfare? Where were they when their members were taking on loans they couldn't afford? Did they dissuade even ONE driver from wrecking his finances, or counsel him on better, more practical options? What are they achieving by keeping drivers from earning a living, the same drivers they claim are 'so poor they can't afford their EMIs'?

It takes minutes to form a union. It takes much more to actually act in the spirit of one. What's happening now is hooliganism, as that's what's always been demonstrated to work in this country.

Ignorance is no excuse for crying foul, and unless there's evidence of actual fraud, there's isn't much to be gained even by taking this stuff to court.

People lived without Uber and Ola a few years ago, they'll get used to living like that again. The drivers are losing whichever way you look at it, chasing a promised land that doesn't exist.

Last edited by Chetan_Rao : 28th February 2017 at 15:37.
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Old 28th February 2017, 15:42   #88
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Default Re: Uber, Ola drivers unhappy with remuneration, to go on strike

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Originally Posted by Chetan_Rao View Post

People lived without Uber and Ola a few years ago, they'll get used to living like that again. The drivers are losing whichever way you look at it, chasing a promised land that doesn't exist.
Totally concur with this. Fortunately (or should I say unfortunately?), we Indians are the best at adapting to changes and we will get over the Ola/Uber reliance very quickly.
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Old 28th February 2017, 16:01   #89
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Default Re: Uber, Ola drivers unhappy with remuneration, to go on strike

Took couple of UberPool rides now. Was able to get one easily while going from Malleswaram to KSCA. While coming back, 3 drivers cancelled. Finally one guy accepted. I was the 4th passenger in the car.

I asked the driver to turn on the AC. Then it started going downhill.

He flatly refused to turn on the AC saying it is not accepted in Pool and said i can go ahead and complain if i want to and he doesn't care! Quickly reading his hostility, i asked if he could allow me to down the windows and started a conversation in Kannada to pacify and also know what the issue is.

Then he mellowed down and the floodgates opened. He started ranting that UberPool is unsustainable, Uber has just increased the incentives, ya da ya da.

He said that Kumarswamay will be supporting these guys and appointing a laywer to fight on their behalf etc. Don't know how true that it.

He said most of the drivers are back on duty today because they have families to feed and EMIs to pay. The irony beats me really.

I don't know where the crux of the problem is. I think everyone has to take a step back and relook at what is happening. But cabbie being uncustomer friendly will not help them.

Lets see how this saga unfolds. The high court has said that the stike is not game so the cabbies have no recourse other than start driving. But i see the simmering tension and don't know where it will erupt again.
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Old 28th February 2017, 19:04   #90
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Default Re: Uber, Ola drivers unhappy with remuneration, to go on strike

It is true that HDK is the only person offering moral support to the drivers, but there is no unity among drivers as many money launderers have invested on taxi's and rented the vehicles either on rate per trip basis or monthly salary of INR 15K. They are also partially responsible for harassment of drivers, it will be a good measure if Ola or Uber promote owner cum driver concept.
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