The thousands thronging the Regional Transport Office (RTO) every day are a constant reminder to the transport authority to appoint a public relations officer (PRO) to assist the harrowed citizens. The RTO has been functioning without a PRO for three years, and helpless citizens are left to figure out the procedures on their own.
On an average, more than 1,500 people visit the RTO everyday. Those who are hard-pressed for time find it easier to approach touts hanging around the premises to get their work done quickly and without
Rahul Shah, an IT professional, said, “Just to pay the road tax and register my outstation car with the Pune RTO, it took me more than 20 days and countless visits. There is no proper system in place for people to get their work done in a streamlined manner.”
Dinesh Raisinghani, a working professional, said, “It is very difficult to get any information at the RTO as the staff are arrogant and unhelpful. It is the touts standing near the counters who help in getting the work done.”
RTO officials claim Pune Regional Transport Officers have written to the state transport office, emphasising on the need to appoint someone who could serve as the department’s coordinator, but they have not received any reply.
As per the rules, the state government is liable to hire a staff member for the task of assisting citizens and coordinating with the media and other external agencies.
Jitendra Patil, Pune Regional Transport Officer, said. “It has been more than three years since the Pune RTO had a PRO. We have sent several letters to the state transport office to appoint someone since the post is vacant. The idea behind having a PRO is to help people with their queries. Most people visit the RTO to get their learner’s licences and to apply for new vehicle registrations. We have four officials who help the citizens with their doubts.”
Patil added, “We also have a website that has all the information. We are working on alternative solutions like kiosks, where people can check the information and download the forms. Things will fall into place by the end of this year”