(TibetanReview.net, Feb 17) – More than 100 taxi drivers went on strike in Tongren (Tibetan: Rebkong) county of Huangnan (Tibetan: Malho) Prefecture in Qinghai province on Feb 15, a day after China’s Ministry of Public Security announced a three-month national crackdown on unlicensed taxis, reported the official Xinhua news agency Feb 16. It said the protesters were calling on the local government to curb illegal cabs. It said the cabbies gathered on a road in the county since 8 am and dispersed only around 7 pm when it was getting dark.
The county had 180 licensed cabs whereas over 300 were plying, the report said. “I work from early morning till late night and only earn 100 yuan (US $15) every day … But the illegal cab drivers can earn more money at ease because they do not have to pay the register fees,” one driver was quoted as saying.
The report said the county’s transportation officials who went to the scene and promised to launch a crackdown on illegal cabbies failed to win the trust of the drivers who, it said, vowed to continue the strike if the local government failed to solve the problem.