Nashik: The city police has undertaken a drive since November 25 against errant auto-rickshaw drivers to discipline traffic in the city and to prevent financial loot of passengers. So far, action has been taken against around 1,470 auto rickshaws and a fine of Rs 3.60 lakh has been recovered. A total of 170 auto rickshaws which have no permits have been seized.
Over 23,000 auto rickshaws are running in the city daily, however, it is coming to light that out of them, 10,000 auto rickshaws have no permit. City police are trying to trace out whether auto rickshaws in such numbers are running in the city or not, their routes and the area which has the highest number of rickshaws.
Police are taking action against those auto rickshaw drivers which are not charging a fare as per meter, to carry additional passengers than the limit of three passengers, no uniform and batch, carrying of passengers after illegal agreement with a private company and no documents.
With the start of police action, many auto rickshaws have disappeared from the roads. City police changed the timing and places to take action for a week. They have started the second phase of the action. It is necessary that there should be an audit of auto rickshaws in the city transparently.
A work regarding this has been given to personnel in police chowkis in the city. They are taking note of auto rickshaw halts in their area, number of auto rickshaws, owner and driver, whether auto rickshaws run on the meter or not and the routes of share-a-rickshaw. This information will be collected jointly. This will be immensely benefitted in future, Commissioner of Police Vishwas Nangre Patil has clarified.
Sting operation at 9 places
It is important to charge a fare as per meter and auto rickshaw drivers should provide this facility if it is demanded, however, they are charging an excessive fare in the name of share-a-rickshaw. To curb this, police have so far conducted sting operation at 9 places.
Police in civil dress demanded to charge a fare as per meter, but they opposed it. Action against these auto rickshaw drivers was taken as per rules, police have clarified.
Boards erected at 200 rickshaw halts
The police department has issued temporary notifications for 263 rickshaw halts in the city. Of them, boards have been erected at 2000 halts and the number of auto rickshaws has been mentioned on them. However, it is mandatory that representative of auto rickshaw unions should have information of their numbers halt wise, senior police and RTO officials have made it clear.