NA discusses doing away with minimum qualification requirement for taxi drivers

The Friday question hour session of the National Assembly discussed the need to do away with minimum qualification for taxi drivers.

Member from Khatoed Laya constituency informed the house that according to the Road Safety and Transport Act 1999, taxi operators does not require any qualification to operate a taxi. However, Road Safety and Transport Guideline 1999 says taxi drivers are required a minimum qualification. The guideline was revised in June 6, 2018.

He said, “I would like to request the ministry to do away with the minimum qualification for taxi drivers. Since most taxi drivers are from low income group, doing away with minimum qualification would not just benefit taxi drivers but also narrow the gap between the rich and poor,”MoIC Lyonpo said, “According to RSTA Rules and Regulations, the minimum qualification for operating taxis is class eight and in order to get this qualification, an operator has to undergo professional driving course for about 2 months. The person who wishes to operate taxi should also undergo written exam and practical test and upon passing both the test, he or she is provided the certificate. RSTA will then provide a license to operate taxi.”

“I personally feel that the minimum qualification to operate taxi is not required because professional driving course with written exam and practical test should be enough to operate a taxi”, Lyonpo added.

Lyonpo also said, “The government has put a cap on the number of taxi and will make sure that it continues. During our campaign, we made several pledges and we also pledged that we will do away with the minimum qualification of class eight for taxi drivers. We are working on it and certainly we will do away with the qualification”.

Lyonpo said, “According to RSTA Rules and Regulations, if the vehicle is more than 9 years, it is not allowed to operate. Road worthiness requirement is done every year by RSTA and if the condition of the vehicle is good, we are also working on doing away with limiting the use of vehicle up to 9 years.”

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