In a move to effectively book Goa's erring cabbies and to make sure tourists have a trouble-free time, the state tourism department is planning to equip all cabs with GPS transmitters and electronic meters.
"We are working in coordination with the transport department to install GPS transmitters and electronic meters to make sure that the tourists have an enjoyable experience here while travelling," Tourism Director Swanil Naik told IANS Wednesday.
Ravi Shah, 43, remembers his first taste of Goa.
The electrical store owner from Mumbai was on a weekend holiday with his family at a resort near Calangute beach and the first taxi he hailed asked him to shell out 800 bucks for it. The second demanded he pay Rs.750 and abused him when he turned it down.
"This was my first time to Goa and it began with unnecessary abuse... 800 rupees for a 10 km drive is unbelievable. This is not Hawaii!" Shah said.
His predicament is not solitary. Goa's unregulated and mafia-styled taxi operations are a grouse not just with locals, but tourists too.
According to Naik, while an electronic surveillance gizmo like the global positioning system (GPS) transmitter would help the authorities keep tab on the movement of the taxi, the electronic meters would help tourists and other users in knowing the exact amount of kilometres travelled and the corresponding costs.
"We have already started a sensitisation drive amongst the taxi operators trying to instill the spirit of 'Atithi Devo Bhava' within them," Naik said.
A string of three documentaries featuring Prince Jacob, the uncrowned prince of Goan Konkani theatre, called 'tiatr', is aimed at the taxi operator audiences, instructing them on ways to make the tourist feel at home and sticking to authorised rates and other standard protocol.
"The spirit of Atithi Devo Bhava and preservation of Goa's natural beauty are the key social themes highlighted through the three documentaries starring Prince Jacob. They will be shown on local TV channels," Naik said.