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Soon, private vehicles to provide carpooling service
Posted on 17th September 2019
Just like ride-hailing apps Ola and Uber, private car owners can soon provide carpooling service.

In an effort to promote shared mobility in the country, the Union road transport ministry has prepared the guidelines for the carpooling service by private car owners. Sources close to the development said that the transport ministry intends to make ride-sharing by private car owners a no-profit, no-loss service.

Sources said that the draft guidelines prepared by the road transport ministry ensure the Know Your Customer, or KYC, norms would be done by the users.

The draft guidelines propose to limit the maximum number of rides taken per day to four. The government doesn't want commercial activities and has therefore restricted only four carpool rides per day by private car owners.

The carpooling concept would be based on no profit, no loss model and a service provider will only be able to recover the input cost.

Carpooling by private vehicle owners will be allowed only through mobile apps. Aggregators will need to ensure that KYC – or, the process of verifying the identity of a client – for both the vehicle owner and the riders is complete. The vehicle owner will have to declare trip details before the start of a trip.

To make the model a successful one, new guidelines will also ensure that the states get some revenue from carpooling.

Existing carpooling apps such as Quick Ride and BlaBlaCar will need to tweak their applications to meet the new requirements.

Cab aggregators such as Uber and Ola will need to develop a separate platform to allow pooling by private vehicle owners, as they cannot continue with the existing set-up.

With a massive push to Shared Mobility, the government aims to decongest roads by bringing down the huge numbers of cars plying on road. The move would also reduce pollution levels. The government hopes that the move will also help to make e-vehicles more acceptable, affordable and successful in the coming days.

As part of a wider plan to incentivise electric vehicles, the Centre in a letter on July 17 had asked the state governments to promote shared mobility to reduce congestion on roads and tackle pollution.

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