Soon, you won't have to go through the trouble of searching for a vacant auto on the streets and then haggling with the driver to down the meter in order to commute.
Reason: The east municipal corporation, in collaboration with an NGO, has decided to launch an 'auto on call' service through which you can book an auto over phone - a la radio cabs.
At present, Gurgaon is the only city in the National Capital Region (NCR) where such a facility is available.
According to East Corporation municipal commissioner SS Yadav, the civic body has tied up with Nirmal Foundation in order to provide safer commute to the residents, especially women who have limited travelling options at night. The date for the launch is yet to be decided.
Nirmal Foundation has already implemented the any time rickshaw (ATR) concept in several cities of Gujarat. The foundation will channelise operations whereas the east corporation will provide space for an office and a training centre for rickshaw operators.
"The foundation will establish a call centre for running the autos. Since all the autos associated with the service would ply as per meter, it would provide a fair service. All the autos would be GPS-enabled. Moreover, all the drivers inducted in the fleet would be verified by the police," said SS Yadav.
A community hall in Nand Nagri has been earmarked as office for the service. The foundation would share a part of the revenue generated through advertisments on the autos.
The foundation has been entitled with the task of mobilising auto drivers to join the service.
"As per their business model in other cities, they themselves mobilise auto drivers to join the service. Around 10,000 drivers are associated with the service in other cities as the foundation provides several benefits to the drivers such as accident insurance, health cover, training and additional revenue from advertising," an official said.