Rapido, the bike taxi operator, is planning to employ 100 women as operators in a year’s time, in order to attract women customers. However, there is still no clarity as to whether operating bike taxis in Karnataka state is legal or not. This lack of clarity did stop other operators from offering similar bike taxi services in the state, while Rapido had continued to operate since 2019. Ola received a suspension order for six months for operating bike taxis ‘illegally’ in 2019. The same was later withdrawn after political intervention.
Meanwhile, Rapido is now going to apply for legal permission for the Bike Taxi Service with the State Transport Authority. Even though no two-wheeler taxi services have been officially permitted to operate in the state yet, the Karnataka High Court recently observed that a motorcycle taxi comes under the category of transport vehicle as per the provisions of the Central Government’s Motor Vehicles Act, 1988.
The bike taxi startup was recently in the news for its initiatives to ensure the physical and mental well being of its driver partners. It is offering its driver partners COVID-insurance of Rs 2 lakh and Rs 3 lakh, with premiums starting at Rs 117. This also includes group insurance plans for its dependents.
It has tied up with Apollo to help its driver partners avail up to 10 per cent discounts on medicines bought from Apollo Pharmacies. They also enjoy a five per cent discount on fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) products bought from Apollo Pharmacies.