Andhra Pradesh

MLA intervenes, seizes auto carrying 23 schoolchildren for overloading

Need for action : Risky ride is a way of life in Chirala and other parts of Prakasam district.

Need for action : Risky ride is a way of life in Chirala and other parts of Prakasam district.   | Photo Credit: KommuriSrinivas

An upset Krishnamohan halts auto carrying 23 children to school

Timely intervention by Chirala MLA Amanchi Krishnamohan prevented what could have been a possible accident, when he stopped an autorickshaw which was reportedly carrying 23 tiny tots to their school in Chirala on Saturday.

Aghast at seeing the autorickshaw carrying children, eight of them three years old, in an ‘inhuman’ manner, the angry MLA who was going to Vijayawada, got down from his car and stopped the autorickshaw from going any further on the Chirala-Vetapalem road.

Alerted by the MLA, Chirala Motor Vehicle Inspector Krishna Rao seized the autorickshaw for overloading in violation of the Motor vehicles Act.

The autorickshaw, which was permitted to carry only three persons, carried 23 children, he said, adding a special drive would be launched to curb risky rides in and around the town.

15 students in a vehicle

“This is not a one-day affair. But I could not tolerate tiny tots being transported like animals in an overcrowded autorickshaw with risk to their lives,” the MLA told The Hindu.

Blaming the school concerned for allowing such risky rides, he said he would shortly meet the District Educational Officer and press for a special drive by the Education Department to curb unsafe travel to schools. Risky ride is a way of life in Chirala and other parts of Prakasam district, as autorickshaws carry 15 to 20 students charging anywhere between ₹1,000 and ₹1,500 per month on a sharing basis, as parents too turn a blind eye to the risk involved, as school buses avoid narrow lanes and bylanes.

At the same time, parents say they could not afford ₹5,000 to ₹7,000 per month an auto driver charges for taking one or two children.

It has been observed that while five children sit by the side of the autorickshaw driver on temporary seats arranged, an equal number of children sit on the back seat and the wooden plank opposite to it as also the side railings, making travel most unsafe.

Some children also sit below the back seat.

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Printable version | Feb 23, 2020 1:31:23 PM |

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