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'Bogus' autos still ply in Navi Mumbai

RTO alleges that 1,351 auto rickshaws ply on roads with fake number plates after their registrations were cancelled; draws records so they can be recognised during drives

In an attempt to curb the menace of auto rickshaws that ply with bogus number plates after their registrations are cancelled, the deputy regional transport office (Dy RTO) in Navi Mumbai has drawn up a list of such vehicles for a crackdown on their drivers.


Facing the issue head-on: A list of fake autos will be circulated to traffic
constables in order to tackle the menace. pic for representation


The initiative comes after numerous complaints of autos using bogus number plates.

The Dy RTO has identified 1,351 registrations that have been cancelled; the vehicles with these registrations have been duly scrapped. However, many rickshaws are reportedly using these invalid registrations which cannot be tracked by RTO due to various reasons.

"Rickshaws with cancelled registrations do not come to the RTO for renewal of their permit, so they can't be tracked easily. They generally ply late at night and it becomes difficult to identify them. Also, due to lack of manpower, we cannot carry out full-fledged drives against them," said Sandesh Chavan, assistant regional transport officer, Vashi RTO. Officials said that with the help of the list, autos with fake number plates would be easily traced during regular inspection drives by the RTO.

"We have taken cognisance of the vast number of autos with fake registration numbers. The list that we have prepared will help us identify bogus autos," Chavan added.     
      
In fact, to make the drive effective, the deputy RTO is planning to circulate the list among traffic police officials. It also plans to publish it in newspapers.  Traffic cops agree that the data in the list would be helpful.

Vijay Patil, deputy commissioner (traffic), Navi Mumbai Police said "We have not received the list from the RTO yet, but it will be helpful during our drives against fake rickshaws in the city."

Meanwhile, the auto drivers' union has agreed to join hands with the RTO to book autos plying with bogus registrations. Madhukar Patil, secretary of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Rickshaw Sangh, Navi Mumbai said, "We have been raising the issue of bogus autos in the city for the last three years. It's good news that the RTO is formulating a list to control the menace. We are ready to assist the RTO."

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