High Court restricts entry of taxis in Srinagar city

In a decision likely to affect thousands of commuters, the Jammu and Kashmir High Court today directed the Traffic Police authorities not to allow entry of Tata Sumos and other taxis coming from other districts into the city.
The directions were issued by a division bench of the High Court which is hearing a public interest litigation to streamline the traffic in Srinagar.
As per the latest order of the High Court, the traffic authorities have been told not to allow Tata Sumos and taxis coming from south and north Kashmir beyond the Pantha Chowk and Parimpora bus stands.
The proposal to restrict the entry of the Srinagar-bound passenger taxis into the city was first mooted by the Transport Department after Batamaloo General Bus Stand was shifted to another area.
The decision to restrict the entry of the taxis has, however, left thousands of commuters high and dry, particularly in the evenings when public transport is not available on most routes.
There is no alternative and fast mode of transportation available to the commuters from Pantha Chowk and Parimpora bus stands except the ramshackle TaTa buses which run at a snail’s pace.
Besides, the decision to restrict the entry of taxis into the city has also caused inconvenience to patients and students, who prefer Tata Sumos and other taxis over local buses.
To address the concerns of commuters, the High Court in its directions today also directed the Kashmir Divisional Commissioner to chair a high-level meeting of officials, including from the traffic and transport departments, for ensuring smooth movement of vehicles from Batamaloo to Qamarwari and from Batamaloo to Mominabad, the two corridors which cater to the north and south-bound traffic to the city from its suburbs and other districts.