CHENNAI: Share auto drivers seem to be facing the heat from all sides. This journalist had quite an ordeal, changing share autos thrice to reach office. It began when the first share auto driver slipped past a traffic constable at Anna Arch when he was asked to stop.
Irked by this, the policeman followed the vehicle and forced it to a stop by taking out the keys. Most of the passengers simply vanished without paying. In the second share auto, Ravi, the driver from Chetpet who plies on the Gemini-Mogappair route, revealed that dishing out money to the policemen was just a routine expense, akin to diesel costs.
“We write off `100 every day. They book us for just about anything, but mostly for overloading.” he said. As if on cue, another traffic policeman who was lying in wait stuck out his hand near Anna Nagar 13th Main Road. Presenting his ‘bill’, which acted much like a toll-ticket, Ravi sped past. “They have checking spots along the route, so you cannot escape,” he said. A look at the bill revealed that he had been booked for ‘not wearing a seat belt’ - the least of the share auto driver’s worries.