VELLORE: The district administration has announced that the new revised auto fares have come into effect from October 16 in accordance with the State’s order. Collector R Nanthagopal, in a press statement said, auto drivers should ensure that electronic metres are fixed to their vehicles within 45 days from October 16.
The government has fixed `25 as the base fare for the first 1.8 kilometres and `12 for every additional kilometre. The waiting charge has been fixed at `3.50 for every five minutes. The auto drivers can charge an additional 50 percent of the regular fare from 11 pm to 5 am. Though most of the public welcomed the move, many were sceptical about the ability of the authorities to enforce the revised fares.
“The officials should continuously monitor the auto drivers to check if they follow the new revised fare. In Chennai, it was not followed effectively and the auto drivers continue to fleece the passengers,” said Ragupathi, a resident of Katpadi, who works in Chennai.
Selvam, a native of Sathuvachari, said that the autos are charging anything between Rs 20 and Rs 25 per kilometre in Vellore city. Share autos are even worse, fleecing commuters and there is no system to regulate them.
The auto workers, on the whole, did not welcome the revised fare structure.
“There are around 15,000 autos and share autos in the district. The revised fare will not suit auto owners in Vellore and its suburban areas. We want area-specific fares for autos and also urge the authorities to take action against unauthorised autos being operated in the district,” said K Jones Prabakaran, District Secretary of CITU-Vellore District Auto Drivers’ Assocaition.
He further said that the association would take a decision on the revised fare after convening a meeting on October 25.