Citizens' Issues
50 more taxis seized in Delhi, 'surge pricing' may go
New Delhi : Authorities in Delhi have impounded 50 more taxis for over-charging customers as Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal hinted on Wednesday that "surge pricing" by cabs may face the axe forever.
 
"We have impounded 50 more taxis following complaints from customers. All the taxis belong to various app based cab aggregators," a Delhi government official told IANS.
 
He said 35 of the 50 taxis were registered outside Delhi.
 
The Delhi government had on Monday seized 18 taxis belonging to Ola and Uber for over-charging commuters, taking advantage of a leap in demand for taxis during the ongoing odd-even traffic scheme.
 
Kejriwal has threatened "strict action" over "surge pricing", a technique used by the cab aggregators to hike fares in the event of high demand.
 
After app-based cab operator Uber blamed the Delhi government for taxi shortage, Kejriwal clarified that his government was not opposed to online aggregators but insisted they obey the law.
 
"We are not against taxi aggregators. We fully support them. They provide important service to people. But they will have to follow (the) law.
 
"Overcharging, diesel cars, drivers without license/badges and blackmailing by taxi aggregators won't be allowed," the chief minister tweeted. 
 
He alleged that one of the media houses supporting "surge pricing" had Rs.150 crore investment in one of these taxi aggregators. He did not name any media house.
 
The demand for taxis has shot up in the capital on account of the odd-even traffic scheme that commenced on April 15 and will run till April 30.
 
Restrictions on diesel and petrol driven cars during the ongoing scheme has forced thousands of motorists to go for taxis to commute.
 
Kejriwal has termed the surge pricing as "daylight robbery" and blamed the companies for "openly blackmailing" the Delhi government. 
 
"Surge pricing is daylight robbery. No responsible government can allow that.
 
"Some taxis saying they will not provide cab if they are not allowed to loot. This is open blackmailing (and) government will not let that happen," he said. 
 
After a Poonam Pandey wrote to Kejriwal on his Twitter account that the suspension of surge pricing should continue even after the odd-even system ends on April 30, Kejriwal replied: "Yes. We will do it."
 
After Kejriwal's statement on Monday, Uber and Ola suspended surge pricing.
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.

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Rajan goes on back foot on 'one-eye king' comment
Pune : After coming under attack from Finance Minister Arun Jaitley for his "one-eyed king" comment on India's growth rate, Reserve Bank of India (RBI) Governor Raghuram Rajan on Wednesday seemed to offer the peace pipe to the Centre saying that the country's current growth rate reflects the hard work of the government.
 
“Current growth reflects efforts of government, people,” Rajan said, while at the same time apologising to the visually impaired for his earlier statement.
 
“I want to apologize to a section of the population, the visually impaired, who might be hurt by my statement. My intent in saying 'One-eyed King in the land of blind' was to say that our outperformance is in the midst of global weakness,” Rajan clarified while addressing the 12th convocation of the National Institute of Bank Management, Pune.
 
Jaitley had on Tuesday objected to Rajan's comment on India's growth saying that a 7.5 percent growth rate for any other country would have meant a “celebration”.
 
Rajan, however, added that India's growth rate, though commendable, should not lead to euphoria as the potential for further growth is undoubtedly high.
 
“India is the fastest growing large economy in the world. But as a central banker, I cannot get euphoric with India's economic growth rate as it is at the cusp of substantial pick up in growth. I see scope to grow faster given capacity utilisation and agricultural output," Rajan said.
 
“India has a long way to go to boost per capita income,” he added.
 
Referring to the current status of public sector banks in the country, Rajan said: “RBI has offered all help to Bank bureau in reforms.”
 
The earlier comment from Rajan, who often comes up with some eyebrow-raising one liners, had not gone down well with the central ministers. First Commerce Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said she did not approve of his use of words, followed by an observation from Minister of State for Finance Jayant Sinha.
 
Sitharaman had countered Rajan's comment saying: "I may not be happy with his choice of words. Whatever action is being taken by this government is showing results. Foreign direct investment is improving. There're clear signs manufacturing is reviving. Inflation, current account deficit is under control."
 
Sinha said: "We are the shinning star. I don't agree with what the governor said."
 
Rajan's remark -- "I think we have still to get to a place where we feel satisfied. We have this saying -- 'in the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is king'. We're a little bit that way" -- had raised eyebrows among central ministers.
 
Jaitley was on Tuesday also asked if his government intended to give Governor Rajan, whose term expires in September, an extension. "I don't think we discuss these matters in the media or publicly. It is not proper to make comments on this at all," Jaitley responded.
 
But the finance minister did not deny the governor his due. "I think the Reserve Bank has done fairly well in the last year, year-and-a-half. It was confronted with a situation where you had near double-digit growth and that growth led to a situation of high interest rates," he said.
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.

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COMMENTS

MG Warrier

1 year ago

Copied below is my response to a media report on the subject published on April 17/18:
This refers to the report “India ‘one eyed’ king in land of blind, says Rajan” (Business Standard, April 17). India has immensely benefited from the communication skill of Dr Raghuram Rajan ever since he returned to India in 2013. Whether he is making a speech in an international forum or interacting with students in an educational institution somewhere in Kerala, Dr Rajan talks with the ease of a professor addressing his students in a classroom. This gives him a prominent position among the trio comprising himself, Prime Minister Modi and Arvind Kejriwal who together woke up the giant in India during the current decade.
While Kejriwal combined the civil services discipline and the ability to look at things in right perspective to create awareness about the mess in which the greed of the rich and the powerful had landed this country and Modi reinforced the capacity of the country to stand up and talk in international community on India’s terms, Dr Rajan takes care of ensuring that the Indian financial sector takes regular health checks to ensure sustainable economic growth. His catch phrases ‘A pig doesn’t become beautiful by applying lipstick’, ‘Make for India’, ‘Don’t fixit, if it isn’t broken’, reference to ‘traffic signal’ approach to monetary policy management by central banks and so on to the present reference to the ‘one eyed’ king have much deeper messages which the audience do appreciate and ponder over for long. These are used by Rajan the teacher (which role was appreciated by Prime Minister Modi when he attended a function at RBI during April 2015).
M G Warrier, Mumbai

Bapoo Malcolm

1 year ago

Aandho may kaana raja, takay saer bhaaji, takay saer khaja. There are so many such proverbs, sayings, metaphors and similes. We can find fault with all of them. And with everything. It's a national pastime. But for central ministers to waste time on such trivial matters is more of a concern.

"I am CIA agent" was a badge Piloo Mody wore to Parliament when Indira Gandhi would blame everything on the 'foreign hand". No one saw the humour. Tharoor's 'headless chickens' comment and the cattle class remark were similarly attacked. It's a lack of education in idiomatic content that leads to this pettiness.

When will we grow up?

To retaliate to Rajan's comment, I would have used, "What is the sense of casting pearls before swine?". Meaning that he is incapable of seeing the value of good things. And then, I would have been attacked for referring to pigs.

An idiom for an idiom is better than an eye for an eye. Surprisingly no visually challenged, including the partially challenged, seems to have objected. Only the political detractors.

Yes, when will we grow up?

Ramesh Poapt

1 year ago

Equivalent saying in gujarati may not hurt anyone. it is 'caster(low quality) plant is king in barren land.(ujjad gam ma erando pradhan)!
here again ,'intolerance' applies well. I dont think there was ANY objectionable comment by Mr Rajan. Liberty of expression is on the way to be banned.Mr Rajan had not ANY bitter intention behind his comment.It was just lighter way as per in style/profile.I fully endorse Rajan's comment.

MG Warrier

1 year ago

Even in Malayalam, there is a saying "Mookkillaa Rajyathu Muri-mookkan Rajavu" meaning 'In a country where no one has nose, the one with half a nose is the King'...Will it be an offence to physically challenged to quote this proverb? We are after controversies, hair-splitting words and phrases.

Cinema for a cause: Kannada film tickets to fund cancer drugs for girls
New Delhi : An innovative experiment of raising charity funds through screening feature films in cinema halls seems to have come as a big relief for nine cancer-afflicted girls in Karnataka who are now looking forward to regular fund flows for uninterrupted treatment.
 
Sreeraksha, Prajna, Amisha, Nafisathula Ifrath, Devapriya, Nidhi Kamat, Mariyam Saheera, Apeksha and Fathimath Misbha, undergoing treatment at the Kasturba Medical College Hospital, Mangalore, require monetary support - ranging from Rs.1 lakh to Rs.3 lakhs ($1,500-$4,500) - for cancer treatment.
 
NGO CanKids Kidscan has joined hands with producers of Kannada film "The Plan" to raise awareness and funds for its Girl Child Project that offers treatment and support to girls with cancer.
 
The funds collected by the NGO, along with the film's producers - Malgudi Talkies and Day Dream Creations - will support the nine girls in Mangalore by offering treatment, emotional and psychological support, transportation, nutrition, education, accommodation and social reintegration.
 
For a daily wage labourer who is the father of nine-year-old Fathimath Misbha, diagnosed with Acute Lymphblastic Leukemia, the funds would be a blessing for his child.
 
"We don't have money. If they don't help, we would stop the treatment," said Fathimath's father.
 
The NGO and the film's producers are aiming to collect Rs.12 lakh through crowd funding for the nine girls through advance sale of tickets of a special re-release of the movie in Mangalore, Udupi, Karkala and Kundapur on April 22.
 
The producers were about to release a free digital version of the movie on YouTube when a call for a donation from an acquaintance for the cancer treatment of a school girl threw up the idea of generating funds for charity through film screenings.
 
The Mumbai-based Malgudi Talkies' chief Ashok Shetty said: "My friends suggested that rather than releasing a free version of the film on YouTube, we could re-release it on select screens and collect charity funds through advance sale of tickets."
 
He said donors can contribute and save a girl's life and get free tickets of "The Plan" by visiting http://malguditalkies.in/shop/
 
The popular film, featuring Ananth Nag, Kousthubh Jayakumar, Hemanth, Sriram, Gauthami and Harish Roy, was first released in November.
 
"We are going to colleges and cities to highlight the cause linked to the re-release of the film. We are aiming to collect Rs 12 lakh for the nine cancer bravehearts," Shetty said.
 
"For every ticket that is sold, Rs.60 would be directed towards the treatment of the nine girls," said Shetty.
 
Film director Keerthi said if the experiment for the cause is successful, they may continue to re-release the movie in other parts of the state too.
 
All the nine girls undergoing treatment at KMC Hospital, Mangalore, are under the care of Dr. Harsha Prasad L, assistant professor in the department of paediatrics.
 
"A majority of childhood cancers are curable. It is a crime not to seek medical help for a girl child with cancer," Prasad maintained.
 
"The Girl Child Project campaign will help create awareness about the importance of treating girls similar to boys," he added.
 
CanKids KidsCan chairman Poonam Bagai said: "Such a crowd funding initiative has been attempted first time by us in partnership with Malgudi Talkies and Day Dream Creations."
 
"Gender discrimination in our country is prevalent at all levels. In a study in Haryana in 2013, we found that girls with cancer seem to be facing discrimination as compared to boys," she said.
 
"Some parents do not want to inform relatives or neighbors about this ailment as it could hamper the marriage prospect of their other children," she said.
 
The CanKids Girl Child project aims to strengthen and empower girl patients and survivors to become leaders and ambassador of childhood cancer, she said.
 
CanKids Kidscan is a non-profit organization for childhood Cancer in India. It works on all aspects to bring a change in childhood cancer from support services to awareness, advocacy, stakeholder engagement, capacity building, quality care, research and impact.
 
Cancer kills as many as 264 children per week in the country. As many as 13,726 deaths due to childhood cancer occurred in India in 2010, of which is 0.7 percent of deaths were among those aged one month to 14 years.
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.

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