Load restriction on autorickshaws ‘impractical’

An autorickshaw is overcrowded with passengers near the Tiruchi railway junction on Saturday.   | Photo Credit: M. Moorthy

Although the State government had ordered strict enforcement of the restriction that autorickshaws should carry only two passengers in view of the second wave of COVID 19, the directive was hardly enforced going by the ground situation in the city on Saturday.

Several autos were seen carrying more passengers and some were seen plying with four or more passengers in the city. Many drivers complained that the restriction was impractical and they would stand to lose income if the authorities were to enforce the rule strictly.

“We cannot refuse customers coming as a family of three persons,” said Bakrudeen Babu, State Secretary of the CITU-affiliated Tamil Maanila Autorickshaw Drivers Union.

“If the officials enforce the directive strictly, we will stand to lose income. This will badly affect us as many of us are just recovering from the blow dealt by the lockdown last year,” he said and added that quite a few drivers had defaulted on loan repayments and had their vehicles impounded by financiers/ agencies.

Some drivers were critical of the government, pointing out that share autorickshaws continue to carry several passengers.

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Printable version | May 8, 2021 4:29:33 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Tiruchirapalli/load-restriction-on-autorickshaws-impractical/article34292219.ece

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