Indian ride-hailing company Ola has been stripped of its operating licence by London’s transport authority over public safety failings. Transport for London (TfL) said that the taxi app was not "fit and proper" to hold an operating licence having put passenger safety at risk.
TfL said in a statement that it refused to grant Ola a new London private hire vehicle (PHV) operator's licence as it "cannot find it fit and proper to hold one after discovering a number of failures that could have risked public safety."
The authority also said that it had found a number of failures in Ola's operations, including breaches of its licensing regime, which led to unlicensed drivers and vehicles undertaking more than 1,000 passenger trips on the platform's behalf. Ola has also been accused of failing to notify Tfl of the breaches when they were first identified.
"Ola can continue to operate pending the outcome of any appeal process", TfL said. Ola has 21 days to appeal against the decision.
Ola, backed by Softbank, entered the London taxi market in February this year, with competitors like Uber, Freenow and Bolt, and traditional black cabs dominating the market.
Uber had also previously been stripped of its operating licence but only days ago won a legal bid to restore operations after a judge ruled that the company was a fit and proper operator.