Agitating taxi entrepreneurs warn of self-immolation

KATHMANDU: Taxi entrepreneurs, who are protesting the government's decision to add new taxis in the Kathmandu Valley for the past few months, warned of self-immolation if the government did not implement past agreements signed with them.

They were speaking at a press conference organised by the Shree Swastik Sworojgar Rini Taxi Bebasayi Sangh at the Reporters' Club in the Capital on Sunday.

During the programme, Chairman of the Sangh, Prakash Basnet, warned that they would intensify their protest if the government did not roll back its decision to add new taxis in the Kathmandu Valley.

Saying that the government has turned a blind eye to the demands of the taxi entrepreneurs, he warned that they would come up with stern protests soon.

He further warned that the repercussions would be awful if the government tried to suppress their agitation.

With the increasing demand and growth in population in the Kathmandu Valley, a Cabinet meeting last year had decided to add new taxis.

Based on the decision of the government, the Ministry of Physical Infrastructure and Transport last month had decided to add 2,850 taxis and the Department of Transport Management (DoTM) had started making preparations to register 1,850 cabs in the first phase.

In the next phase, DoTM plans to allow operation of 500 taxis involving the earthquake-affected family members and register 500 deluxe cabs through companies rather than individual owners.