The state governments decision to slash autorickshaw fares is not really benefiting Mumbaikars. The government had reduced the auto fares in the wake of the reduction in petrol prices by the central government. However few autorickshaws run on petrol in Mumbai and the neighbouring cities.
The decision to slash auto fares was taken by the Mumbai Metropolitan Regional Transport Authority last week. The rates were to be effective from February 8 in the Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR). Since the rate of petrol has been slashed by the Union government we have only been able to issue orders for reduction in fare for autos that run on petrol, said C S Sangitrao,State Transport Secretary. The state government cannot reduce the fare of CNG-run autorickshaws as the Union government has not reduced CNG prices.
As per the order,the basic fare of the autorickshaws has been dropped to Rs 11 from Rs 13. The rate per km is now Rs 7 down by a rupee.
Almost all the autorickshaws in Mumbai,Thane,Mira-Bhayander run on CNG. Since CNG is not available in the limits of Navi Mumbai,the fare reduction would be applied there, said L P Khade,RTO,Thane.
However,even in Navi Mumbai,confusion prevailed among the commuters and auto drivers over the new tariff. There was confusion among the auto drivers but we have started distributing new tariff cards. In a couple of days there will be no confusion, said Kasam Mulani,president of Navi Mumbai Rickshaw Mahasangh.
Commuters have complained of auto drivers not adhering to the new rates. We will undertake action against erring autorickshaw drivers, said S Y Dhiware,ACP (Traffic) of Navi Mumbai police.