He confirmed a booking via Goamiles but did not pick up the client despite insisting and getting the OTP
PANJIM: In a first ever instance since the launch of Goamiles taxi app, the Goa Tourism Development Corporation (GTDC) has terminated the service of a cabbie and blacklisted him from online service, after a passenger accused him of not providing the facility despite confirming the booking.
Maria De Souza, who was to leave for Mumbai in August, had booked a taxi with Goamiles to ferry her from Merces to Dabolim airport. Sharing her ordeal with Herald, the victim’s mother Fatima revealed that Goamiles engaged a driver Laxman Parwar for the purpose. “My daughter called up the driver on the given mobile number and he asked the address from where she had to be picked up. He then asked the OTP which my daughter was reluctant to give. However, he insisted for the OTP as without the OTP he said he could not come to pick as instructed to him by Goamiles. So my daughter had to give the OTP to the driver,” she said in a letter addressed to Herald.
Fatima went on to state that they were ready to leave for the airport by 10am on August 22 but the driver’s phone was not reachable since then. Futile attempts were made to contact Parwar after which her daughter made last minute arrangement to reach the airport. Adding to the family’s woes, an amount of Rs 682.11 was deducted from Maria’s bank account, without the trip being provided to her.
The GTDC that was also in receipt of the complaint, in what it stated was the first case, terminated the service of the driver. An officer told Herald, “We have removed him from the offering any service under Goamiles and blacklisted him too. He is no longer associated with us. We won’t take this nonsense.”
While it sent out a strong message through this action, the promoters of the app and the government authorities have advised customers to not reveal the OTP till the ride is complete. Meanwhile, the GTDC is taking steps to refund the amount to De Souza family.
Notwithstanding this case, the app; the officer, has come as a major relief to not only tourists but locals too including the senior citizens. “We have received feedback that senior citizens and those in need of emergency help are making use of Goamiles. They don’t have to depend on any busy member of their family or neighbours,” he added.