Officials have not yet placed the proposal in the corporation council meeting for approval

Civic administrators seem to have lost interest in reallocating autorickshaw stands in the city, which would have benefitted the public and auto drivers alike.

Five months have passed since the Road Transport Authority (RTA), Ernakulam, had cleared the proposal mooted by the Kochi Corporation regarding auto stands in the city.

Kochi Mayor Tony Chammany, who piloted the move for ending the current practice of trade unions opening autorickshaw stands in the city, had declared that the civic body would allot stands.

A joint inspection team consisting of the officials of the local body, Public Works Department and the police had identified around 170 stands based on certain guidelines.

It was also suggested that stands would be permitted only on roads which had a minimum width of seven metres. The authorities had also mooted issuing new permits for the three-wheelers in the city

The RTA, which met in May this year, had cleared all the parking bays suggested by the Kochi Corporation, said B J. Antony, Regional Transport Officer, Ernakulam.

The Authority had also issued a letter to the civic authorities stating that display boards indicating the details of the parking bays and the maximum number of vehicles that could be parked there shall be displayed at the allocated points.

“Now, it’s the responsibility of the Kochi Corporation to set up the stands,” he said.

At the same time, K.J. Sohan, chairman of the Town Planning Standing Committee of the Kochi Corporation, said he was unaware of such a letter.

“It’s the Town Planning Standing Committee that has to take a decision on such matters. The letter has not come to my notice,” Mr. Sohan said.

Sojan Antony, vice-president of the Ernakulam District Auto Rickshaw Drivers Association (CITU), slammed the civic authorities for failing to bring in the changes which would have benefitted the passengers and autorickshaw drivers.

The authorities were delaying the changes in the sector with ulterior motives. They were not in favour of any improvements in the sector. Though the autorickshaw drivers and their trade unions had always welcomed such reform moves, the civic authorities seemed to be reluctant to introduce the changes, he said.

The corporation authorities need to present the proposal in the corporation council meeting for approval. However, no such initiatives had come from the civic administrators till date, said Mr. Antony, who is also a corporation councillor.

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