Northern Railway and Delhi traffic police on Thursday started a pre-paid auto-rickshaw/taxi service at New Delhi railway station.
A new pre-paid booth has been built close to the area where passengers get down from the foot-over bridges on the Ajmeri Gate side. An updated fair chart has been put up near the booth. There are separate lanes for auto-rickshaws and taxis.
Similar facilities would soon be created at Delhi’s other railway stations such as Nizamuddin, Old Delhi and Sarai Rohilla.
However, it’s not mandatory for all drivers to go pre-paid as promised by the authorities earlier. If drivers are not willing to pick passengers from the pre-paid area, they can drop them in the through lane and leave.
But passengers feel that harassment at the hands of auto and taxi drivers would continue. “What’s new? A pre-paid booth has always been there. It’s just that it has been shifted closer to the platforms,” said Kumar Bibhu, a resident of Mayur Vihar.
Senior railway official Anurag Sachan, however, said, “The service would be a boon to thousands of passengers alighting at the station.”
“The old pre-paid system did not function properly because of its location. Drivers charge exorbitant fares there,” he said.
Traffic police official Anil Shukla said, “Stern action would be taken against auto-rickshaw and taxi operators found violating the norms.”
Passengers can dial 011-25844444 to register complaints. “Making the service mandatory is not ruled out. We would first see how the new system goes,” said Shukla.