Bengaluru, often referred to as the Silicon Valley of India, has been grappling with a perennial issue – traffic congestion. In a bid to address this problem, the city recently imposed a ban on carpooling within its limits. However, this decision has not been met with widespread approval and has raised concerns among the public.
The ban, which carries fines of up to ₹10,000 for violations, has left many residents questioning its effectiveness and potential consequences. While the government’s intention is to reduce traffic congestion and pollution, critics argue that the ban could have the opposite effect.
🚨 Bengaluru has banned carpooling within the city limits. According to the new rules, carpooling can attract fines up to ₹10,000. 🤷
— Indian Tech & Infra (@IndianTechGuide) October 1, 2023
One of the main concerns raised by citizens is the possibility of increased vehicular movement. Carpooling, a popular practice in many cities worldwide, encourages individuals to share rides, thereby reducing the number of vehicles on the road. By prohibiting carpooling, Bengaluru risks pushing more people to use their private cars, potentially leading to more traffic congestion.
Moreover, the ban has sparked accusations that it favors autorickshaw drivers over the general public. Some residents believe that the decision caters to the interests of taxi and autorickshaw unions, potentially at the expense of commuters’ convenience.
It is quite ridiculous, this move. Instead of supporting these apps with proper legislation, the city has just banned them.
Bengaluru, of all the cities, should think outside the box when it comes to managing traffic.
— Vaibhav Gadodia (@whoisvaibhav) October 1, 2023
Criticizing the move, Vaibhav Gadodia, an X (formerly Twitter) wrote, “It is quite ridiculous, this move. Instead of supporting these apps with proper legislation, the city has just banned them. Bengaluru, of all the cities, should think outside the box when it comes to managing traffic.”
Looks like Bengaluru wants to keep its traffic jams exclusive! 🚗😄
— Gururaj Koteyar (@Gururaj2083) October 1, 2023
Gururaj Koteyar, another X user wrote, “Looks like Bengaluru wants to keep its traffic jams exclusive!”
Social media platforms have been flooded with reactions to the ban, ranging from criticism to sarcastic humor. Many users have expressed skepticism about the ban’s effectiveness in addressing the city’s traffic woes. Some have even questioned whether it would lead to more pollution and traffic rather than alleviating the situation.
This ban on carpooling is not an isolated incident. In September, the Karnataka government declared the use of private vehicles for commercial travel, including carpooling services, as ‘illegal.’ This move resulted in increased scrutiny of carpooling apps in Bengaluru, with potential penalties for drivers, including a six-month suspension of their registration certificate (RC) and fines ranging from ₹5,000 to ₹10,000 if caught.