Cops Cane Unruly Autorickshaw Drivers for Creating Ruckus - The New Indian Express

Cops Cane Unruly Autorickshaw Drivers for Creating Ruckus

Published: 31st December 2013 07:24 AM

Last Updated: 31st December 2013 07:24 AM

Close to 150 autorickshaw drivers who blocked the traffic on Kamarajar Salai were lathicharged by the police after their protest against the enforcement of the meter tariff and the subsequent crackdowns, turned violent on Monday.

The auto drivers, who gathered near the Labour Statue, raised slogans against the police and broke through the barricades put up on the stretch, around 11.30 am.

Subsequently, Triplicane Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCP) Anil Kumar Giri warned them to disperse. However, a section of the drivers flagged down an autorickshaw plying with passengers and started damaging the vehicle. As the protestors turned unruly, the DCP ordered a lathicharge.

“A group of auto drivers dispersed after the police issued a warning. However, some of them who were inebriated created ruckus. We had to use force to prevent them from going on the rampage on the busy Kamarajar Salai,” said a police official.

“A large number of  auto drivers affiliated to the CITU were participating in the protest near the Chepauk Guest House. But they were an organised crowd and dispersed promptly after registering their protest,” he noted.

Besides Kamarajar Salai and Chepauk, auto drivers also staged demonstrations in other parts of the city including Avadi, Mambalam and Saidapet.

Sources said about 3,000 autos out of 71,470 vehicles plying in the city had been seized in the joint enforcement drive by the Transport Department and the City Police ever since the revised auto meter tariff was introduced in the city from August 25 after an announcement made by Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa.

Two weeks ago, the crackdown was intensified after the Law & Order wing of the City Police stepped in to enforce the meter tariff under their respective jurisdictions, besides opening police assistance booths and a round-the-clock SMS helpline for complaints.

The police action on SMS complaints, including fines and confiscation of the autos had irked the auto drivers, it was said.

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