Bike services aggregator Rapido has reportedly decided to move the Supreme Court after the Bombay High Court directed it to stop its operation in Maharashtra.
As reported by Outlook Start-Up on January 13, Rapido halted its two-wheeler passenger service, two-wheeler parcel and auto services in the state till January 20, 2023. It also suspended its services on the mobile application within the state for this period.
The Bengaluru-based start-up took this drastic step after a bench comprising Justices GS Patel and SG Dige warned that if it did not suspend its services immediately, the court would ask authorities to permanently prohibit the company from getting any license.
"You thought there were guidelines, and we could run our services without a license. In other words, Mr Judge please protect our illegality under Article 226. Guess what? We will not," the Bombay High Court said in the last hearing.
"Dr Saraf's entire team is here. They will be watching over you like hawks. If you make one mistake, we will dismiss this petition. We will ensure that you are restrained from getting a license permanently, and we will impose costs while dismissing this petition," the court affirmed.
The counsel, which appeared for Rapido, told the state high court that the Bengaluru-based start-up would cancel its service till January 20.
The Court's observations were made in light of the fact there is no licensing regime in place currently in Maharashtra with respect to bike taxis.
Earlier, the company challenged the Maharashtra government's refusal to grant a license to bike taxis. The government told the aggregator that it had not formulated any policies to provide licenses to the bike taxis. Once the court was informed that Rapido does not have permission to operate its service, it dismissed the petition.