Capital commuters can look forward to an upgrade — from autorickshaw to car but at the same fare.
To check overcharging by auto drivers and refusing passengers at will, the Delhi government is examining a proposal for introducing small private cabs in the city. To make the travel economically, the fare will be the same as that for autos.
A presentation will soon be made to chief minister Sheila Dikshit. Lifting the cap on the number of autos that can ply on the city roads, the Supreme Court recently allowed 45,000 more three-wheelers to be added to the existing fleet of 55,000.
The government is looking at these taxis as an alterative to introducing more autos.
It will seek legal advice as the top court’s permission is for increasing the number of autorickshaws.
“It will not only accommodate an extra passenger but will also shield commuters from the extreme weather of Delhi,” a government official said on condition of anonymity.
“We're looking into the possibility of allowing private cabs that will be fitted with the Global Positioning System (GPS).” The government has been pushing for GPS in autos, but drivers have resisted it.
To keep auto drivers in business, the government is open to giving them licences to run the cabs. Two private car manufacturers, who weren’t identified, are believed to have expressed their willingness to provide the cars.