The delay in recalibrating fare metres is causing consternation to many
Two months past the December 18 deadline around 8,000 auto drivers are yet to recalibrate the meters in their vehicles with the new fares.
Not only is the delay creating confusion among passengers, it is also making many pay more than actual fare.
The government had raised minimum fares in auto rickshaws from Rs.14 to Rs.16 and the rates for each subsequent kilometre from Rs. 8 to Rs. 9 in September 2012. It had also set a deadline of Nov.19 for recalibrating fare meters in all auto rickshaws with revised fares. Arrangements were made to recalibrate meters at Singareni Colony, Attapur and other places in the city. However, the deadline was later extended to Dec.18 due to poor turnout by auto drivers.
There are about 77,000 auto rickshaws within GHMC limits, of which 55,000 have recalibrated their fare meters. Nearly 6,000 vehicles are in the custody of financiers for failing to repay loans and the owners of 5,000 autos are not operating them for varied reasons, a senior official of the transport department said.
“It is the duty of an auto driver to recalibrate the fare meter in his vehicle with new fares; but despite extending the deadline, many auto drivers have failed to do so,” admitted Joint Transport Commissioner G. Panduranga Rao.
To keep a check on such errant drivers, the department had launched a special drive from January and every month about 50 autos were being seized. This apart, instructions were issued to officers not to renew the permits, fitness certificates and accept road tax from auto drivers who did not get fare meters recalibrated, Mr. Rao said.