I got into Seva Lal Jaiswal’s taxi because it had the City Taxi Union logo on the back windscreen and I wanted to talk to him about unions and their direction in the face of the changes and challenges to taxi drivers and taxi driving. The conversation did cover that but it ranged across many other issues including his experience of change in Lower Parel, where he lives, his love marriage to a Maharashtrian women and why theirs is successful, sex and kissing in the back seat of taxis, new private taxis, his 15 year old taxi, passengers who don’t want to pay the fare, and his experiences in getting robbed at knife point. Not all of these made it to the main podcast because, again, length. Please listen to the outtakes that are below Seva Lal’s photo. Click on the player here to stream the podcast. (19 min 35 sec)
Seva Lal Jaiswal. “Har aadami ka kwaish hota, yeh apni bhi hai. Koi alag kwaish nahin”
Actually the discussion about taxi unions continued. I asked him about political party affiliations. Here is the rest of the conversation: (1 min 9 sec)
This is the front seat and dashboard. The steering wheel cover is plastic and besides being beautiful, has a good grip. But it is the gear knob that I love. It is a red plastic rose mounted on a rainbow background and covered in clear hard plastic. The red and black printed material is the fare card. The orange box is agarbatti for the Ganapati shrine next to it. The outtake below is the discussion we had about the ruling that 15 year old taxis have to go off the road. Seva Lal’s taxi is 24 years old. (1 min 50 sec)
Neither Guptaji or Babu leased their taxis out to night drivers. Seva Lal does. Here is what he says: (31 sec)
None of the drivers so far have felt threatened by the new private taxis that are also ploughing the streets. All of then so far have said that they don’t expect their business to go down because there are enough people who can’t pay the higher fare. Seva Lal agrees. I am not so confident. Every person who takes a private taxi is one that didn’t take a kaali-peeli. (1 min 5 sec)
The new addition, the podcast transcript in Hindi, is transcribed by VS Rawat who lives in Indore. It was his idea for providing the transcript and he has given quite a few valuable and valued suggestions
The intro music in the podcast is the song Boombai Nagari from the movie Taxi 9211, sung by Bappa Lahiri, Merriene, Nisha and Vishal Dadlani.
Music by Vishal Dadlani and Shekar, lyrics by Vishal Dadlani and Dev Kohli.