Mehrdad Kaivanpor, who was convicted of careless driving and failing to stop at the scene of an accident last year after knocking a woman off her bicycle and driving off, has won his appeal against the revocation of his taxi licence.
His barrister, David Lewis-Hall said, “the council are interfering with your right to earn a living,” and Justice Wilkie ruled that it was for the council to prove that Kaivanpor was unsuitable to hold a licence rather than for him to prove that he was. Lewis-Hall went so far as to say, “this is an important point from a…human rights angle”.
This precedent raises significant questions about the nature of a licence, which one might normally understand to be an earned entitlement based on having demonstrated suitability. The notion of earning a living by driving being “a human right” is clearly aligned with the idea that driving itself is “a human right” rather than a privilege earned by proof of ability to safely control a fundamentally dangerous vehicle and awarded on trust of responsibility for it: both points on which Kaivanpor has, as attested by his convictions, failed.