After Punjab, Sindh Government Authorizes Ban on Careem and Uber

In a recently surfaced wave of actions being directed at the cab hailing services, namely Uber and Careem, the respective government’s motive seems pretty clear: Channelizes and bring these services under ‘official compliance.’ In the latest development, the Government of Sindh has sprung into action to ban these companies from operating in Karachi, as reported by Geo and Samaa TV.

Citing the Transport Secretary Sindh, the mainstream media is reporting that privately owned cars cannot be utilized for commercial purposes. This statement is augmented by the fact that there are several laws which dictate such cars to seek mandatory legal permits and certificates to operate in a commercial manner.

The provincial -Sindh & Punjab- government’s stance in this situation is quite clear and both missives state that taxi service providers must take fitness certificate along with route permits and excise license to conduct this business in the country. The Sindh Minitstry of Transport has also directed a notification to PTA, to take down the mobile applications of Uber and Careem. However, no official has remarked or disclosed:

  • How they are planning to take down these apps?
  • How are they going to implement this (cyber) ban in Sindh only?

Notable Replies

  1. Carn says:

    I'm not sure if "ban" is the right word for it. If you read the actual articles beyond just headlines, they all seem to suggest that the government is trying to figure out how to get these businesses into tax nets. And this isn't exactly a wholly new situation either, Uber had to face these issues in many countries, even Careem faced similar issues in UAE.

    Since these aren't actual cabs and anyone owning a car could pool a ride and charge their passengers for it, the fitness and route licenses won't really be viable. The best way forward would be to just put a requirement for all captains/drivers to be registered with FBR and for these companies to deduct their income taxes like any regular employer. Let the taxi associations complain, the world is evolving and they should either get in pace or accept being left behind.

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