On day 82 of MiD DAY's Meter Down campaign, rogue auto driver went about their business of refusing short distance fares; justified their act by giving lame excuses

Place: Borivli Station (East)
Time: 10.50 am-12 pm
Offenders caught: 4
Commuters speak
Harish Bapat said, "I do not understand why rickshaw drivers keep refusing short distance fares. The amount of money they will earn by plying a long distance fare in a given time is almost the same that they will make by plying multiple short distance passengers. It's time these errant drivers change their attitude."

It's not my fault:  A driver argues with traffic constables who fined him
for refusing fares. Pic/Mahesh Chafe

Sudesh Bhat said, "I am at the station with my mother. Being a senior citizen, she is dependent on a walker for movement. Despite noticing this, none of the drivers agreed to ply us to our destination."

Amit Mohite said, "Refusals from auto drivers have become an integral part of a Mumbaikar's life. With buses and trains packed beyond their capacity, people look forward to travelling by autos. However, these arrogant drivers take advantage of this situation to exploit poor passengers."

Auto drivers speak
On being caught for refusing to ply a short distance passenger, driver Rama Tiwari said, "I did not even talk to the passenger. How dare you book me for refusal?"

Sushil Mishra: "I'm in a hurry to pick up kids from their school. Hence I refused the passenger."

Dinesh Sauj: "I'm sorry for refusing the fare. Please don't fine me. I promise you that henceforth, I'll never refuse a passenger."

Text: Nivedita Dargalkar

Place: Sion station
Time: 10 am-12 pm
Offender caught: 1
Commuter speaks
Shabana Banar, who was refused a fare to T-junction, said, "I'm here with my kids and none of the drivers are ready to ferry us. It's been over 20 minutes now."

Auto driver speaks
Akbar Aliseth: "I never saw any passenger waving in my direction. However, the cops fined me stating that they had seen me refusing a fare."

Text: Anamika More