To increase the number of auto rickshaws plying on the city roads, the Delhi High Court on Monday directed the city government to complete issuing 10,000 fresh auto permits by March 31.
Justice Manmohan said, “The Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi is directed to complete the process for issuance of fresh Letters of Intent (LoIs) by March 31, 2017”.
The court’s order came on the Delhi government’s plea that it be allowed to start a fresh process which would be carried out online to ensure transparency.
The court was hearing the plea of auto drivers who challenged the cancellation of 324 permits to ply auto rickshaws in the city.
The permits were cancelled by the government on receiving complaints of irregularities in the allotment process.
While giving its consent to start the fresh process, the court said it would protect the 324 individuals who had purchased autos after getting the LoIs from the Delhi government keeping in view their financial liability.
It allowed 324 drivers who had purchased autos after getting the LoIs in 2015 from the Delhi government’s transport department to participate in the process.
“The parties (the Delhi government and the auto drivers) have agreed that the Delhi government shall initiate process for fresh 10,000 three-seater auto rickshaw (TSR) licences within a period of two weeks,” the court said.
It added, “They further agreed that applications of those who have a valid badge will be received and processed online. Those who do not have a valid badge will not be allowed to participate in the process”.
Besides these 324, there were others who were also given LoIs in 2015 and they too were entitled to participate in the process for applying for auto permits.