E-meter tampering in Mumbai: Wadala RTO to file FIR against autorickshaw permit owner
The department is also planning to take action against the meter manufacturer, as well as a drive against e-meter-tamperingmumbai Updated: Feb 17, 2018 12:24 IST
Taking note of the tampering of electronic meter highlighted by a civil engineer from Jogeshwari through videos and photos on social media, the transport department, in a first, plans to file a first information report (FIR) against the permit owner of the autorickshaw.
The department also plans action against the meter manufacturer and a drive against e-meter-tampering.
After HT on Friday published a report on how Sachin Khetale, a Jogeshwari resident, unearthed the trick, the Wadala RTO has issued a show-cause notice against permit-holder Nitin Kumar Narale and asked him to depose before them on February 20.
Purushottam Nikam, regional transport officer of Wadala RTO, said they will file an FIR against the permit-holder with the Meghwadi police station, in whose jurisdiction Khetale caught the autorickshaw . “The police have powers and machinery, we don’t have both,” he said.
Nikam said the Motor Vehicles Act does not give RTOs the power to act against any individual. They will seize the e-meter that was allegedly tampered with and will send it to Pune-based Maharashtra Institute of Technology (MIT) for examination. “E-meters are expected to show an error message if an attempt to tamper it was made,” he said.
According to RTO officials, this is the first time the Wadala RTO will file an FIR against a permit-holder. In June 2012, the RTO had registered an FIR against an unauthorised meter-repairer at Vikhroli police station.
RTO officials said transport secretary Manoj Saunik has directed them to take stern action.
“We will launch a drive to look for tampered meters,” said a senior RTO official.
According to RTO officials, the red button and the circuit of the meter have now gone missing.
Shivaji Khairnar, from NGO Janata Jagruti Manch, who helped in the expose, said, “We want people who tamper with meters to be punished.”
First Published: Feb 17, 2018 12:23 IST