Only 46% auto-rickshaws have electronic fare meters in city

Regional Transport Officer Arun Yeola said, “Out of 215 auto rickshaws checked on Tuesday, 67 were found without electronic digital fare meters. The last date of installation is April 30. As the date is approaching, we have established seven squads for checking electronic digital meters. As per a Supreme Court directive, the Mumbai High Court is monitoring the installation of these meters on rickshaws and taxies in all metro cities.”

Earlier, under Section 137 of the Maharashtra Motor Vehicles Rules of 1989, the state government had issued a Government Resolution (GR) on February 17, 2012, declaring electronic digital fare meters compulsory from March 1, 2012. As per High Court directives, the Pune RTO had declared April 30, 2013, to be the last date for fitting the meter.

D B Thorat, senior clerk, Regional Transport Authority (RTA) said, “Only 20,226 auto-rickshaws have installed these new meters out of 43,861 rickshaws in Pune region. We will start fining Rs 2,000 to the errant rickshaws who haven’t installed the new meters under section 86 of Maharashtra Motor Vehicle Act of 1988.”

DCP Vishwas Pandhare, Traffic Branch, Pune Police, said, “The RTO drive for compulsory fitting of electronic digital meters on rickshaws is useful for the citizens. We have provided seven constables who are a part of seven different squads created by RTO. The drive will continue over the next one month.”

Bapu Bhave, Treasurer, Pune City Auto Rickshaw Federation, has expressed inability to meet the deadline of April 30 for installation of electronic digital fare meter. Demanded another four months of time, he said, “There is a scarcity of these electronic digital meters. Many complaints of meters running fast have also come in. We want tamper-free electronic meters.”

Salim Bhai, a rickshaw driver said, “Installation of meters is expensive as the meter’s minimum cost is Rs 3,000. With the battery back-up, it goes to Rs 5,500. I had installed my new electronic meter six months ago by replacing the earlier mechanical meter. So far, my new meter is doing well.”

Auto Break-up

. CNG-run rickshaws: 24,390
. LPG-run rickshaws: 4,798
. Petrol-run rickshaws: 11,659
. Diesel-run rickshaws: 3, 024

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