Addressing the growing number of complaints against auto rickshaw drivers, the state Transport Department and Regional Transport Offices (RTOs) have decided to make it mandatory for drivers to paste tariff cards behind their seats by the end of this month.
Already 2,000 autos have pasted the fare chart behind the driver’s seat. Complaints on the helpline show that maximum people had grievances against auto drivers. “It was seen that maximum complaints come from Andheri RTO against auto drivers for reasons such as refusal to ply, misbehaviour and improper meters,” said Dilip Jadhav, Transport Commissioner.
Of 1,474 grievances, 719 were complaints against auto rickshaw drivers. Commuters have been complaining that the meter rates have severely shot up after the fares increased. “Before the new tariff, the meter showed 2.00, but lately I see that the meter displays 2.40 on the same route even without much traffic,” said Suri Kapoor, a resident of Andheri.
Another complaint is that auto drivers carry two different tariff cards, which confuses the commuters.
“Apart from the tariff card given by the Regional Transport Officers, the auto union prints cards with their stamp,” said Sharad Rao, President, Mumbai Auto Union.
Meanwhile, an auto driver confessed that most of the drivers tamper with meters with the help of mechanics who charge around Rs 150 for doing so. Usually, these meters show around 20-40 paise more than the normal charge.
“Although the RTOs have intensified the drive, it’s not that the same driver is caught by them again and so the drivers continue to tamper the meters,” the auto driver said.