Madras High Court bans bike taxi startup Rapido in Tamil Nadu
Rapido, the online bike taxi service, has come under fire in Tamil Nadu as the Madras High Court banned its operations. The app will not be allowed to function until the state government formulates new regulations.
The directive of the High Court came after the State Transport Authority and the Police Department questioned the validity of Rapido operating its service in Tamil Nadu.
In its judgement, a copy of which was acquired by YourStory, the Madras High Court said,
“Till the regulation is made, the petitioner herein cannot carry on the operation, within the State of Tamil Nadu and this Court finds no error in the Communication of the 4th respondent/the Commissioner of Police, made to Apple Incorporation and Google, to restrict the access of “Rapido-Mobile App” from view/access by the public in State of Tamil Nadu."
As of now, Apple has withdrawn Rapido app from its store. The Tamil Nadu government had objected against the service of Rapido in the state as it did not come under the purview of the Motor Vehicles Act.
However, the court said,
“The Learned Additional Advocate General appearing for the state submits that the proposal is to bring out legislation is under consideration and within the period of four months, they would be able to bring the legislation. Till such time, the petitioner cannot carry on their operation within the state of Tamil Nadu.”
YourStory reached out to Rapido for their response but did not receive a response at the time of publishing.
According to reports, several bike taxis operated by Rapido have been seized by the State Transport Authority across multiple locations on grounds of non-compliance.
Founded in 2015 by Rishikesh S R, Pavan Guntupalli, and Aravind Sanka, Rapido's headquarters are in Bengaluru. It has a fleet of over 60,000 active riders operating across major cities in the country.
(Edited by Saheli Sen Gupta)