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09 December 2023

Cabbie commits suicide in Muhaisnah Camp

He was found hanging from the ceiling of his room. (File)

By VM Sathish

A taxi driver living in the Al Muhaisnah accommodation of a leading taxi company has been found dead in his sharing room.

The Indian taxi driver in his forties was found hanging from the ceiling fan of his room and his friends said it is a case of suicide.

Dubai Taxi Corporation (DTC) confirmed death of the driver who was employed with the company since 2003 but said it’s waiting for the Dubai Police report to know the cause of his death.

“The taxi driver, Jamal, was driving a Halo Taxi and he was a cheerful person. On Sunday, we saw him praying in the adjacent mosque and a day later his body was found hanging from the ceiling fan of his sharing accommodation.  He hails from the Indian state of Tamil Nadu,” said a taxi driver who lives in the same accommodation complex.

“Jamal used to share the room with a few other taxi drivers and on Monday he committed suicide when other room mates were at work. The body was spotted hanging from a ceiling fan at about 5 pm. Dubai Police and Criminal Investigation Department team came to the scene and removed the body within two hours,” said another colleague of the deceased.

Jamal’s colleague said the deceased was depressed and worried after a fine of more than Dh5,000.

But DTC denied that Jamal was to pay a heavy fine.

“We are still waiting for Dubai Police report to confirm the cause of his death. We do confirm that he was not being investigated for any violation in DTC. On the contrary, he’s a model taxi driver with excellent performance,” the company said in statement to Emirates 24l7.

“Our beloved driver had zero fines and his death was not related to any finical burden incurred by DTC. Note, with any job there is a percentage of stress and DTC strives hard to ease drivers’ stress by providing sports activities and competitions, rewards and incentive programmes, complementary Umrah trips, health insurance package and a humanitarian programme such as the Takaful Fund,” the company said in the statement.

Dubai Taxi Corporation said it will provide full support to Jamal’s family back home.

Another taxi driver said: “Drivers are getting fines of different amounts for silly reasons because some customers complain about taxi drivers’ non-courteous behavior and lack of knowledge of routes and locations. Cabbies say they are always under pressure in order to meet the daily collection target and wade through heavy traffic in some areas,” said the taxi driver.

“Even if we are late by two minutes to return a taxi to the next scheduled driver, you will get a fine,” he lamented.

“Some customers get in the taxi and give direction. Then they put the head phone on and do not answer our questions about the drop off point. When we reach the roundabout and ask them about the direction, they will not hear because they are enjoying the music. When we raise our voice to ask direction, they ask why you are shouting. Then they will just call up the complaint number and make a complaint against the driver, who will have to face an investigation and prove his point,” added another taxi driver.