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Overcrowded autos put lives at risk

Overcrowded autos put lives at risk
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Overcrowded autos are a common sight in the city. Due to lack of action on the part of the authorities concerned, auto rickshaw drivers are resorting to demanding high fares, carrying more passengers than the capacity, and hardly using meter and often behaving rudely with passengers.

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Hyderabad: Overcrowded autos are a common sight in the city. Due to lack of action on the part of the authorities concerned, auto rickshaw drivers are resorting to demanding high fares, carrying more passengers than the capacity, and hardly using meter and often behaving rudely with passengers.

Despite Section R 36 (vii)/S 177 for two, three, four & six-wheelers and R 32 (iii)/S 177 of Motor Vehicle (MV) Act which do not permit auto rickshaws to carry more than three passengers, the three-wheelers in the city carry more number of passengers.

With no check from enforcement agencies, auto rickshaw drivers blatantly commute with five or more passengers. There are instances where as many as seven passengers are seen packed in the rear seat plus two in the front flanking the driver.

B Venkatesham, the president of Telangana Auto drivers Union, pointed out that the auto rickshaws that have permits to operate out of city limits are seen running inside the city limits. "These autos carry passengers more than the permitted three passengers by overcrowding their vehicles and putting lives on risk," he said.

Speaking to The Hans India, R Yugandar, a traffic police at Punjagutta, said, "We regularly take action on the auto drivers who carry passengers more than the limit allotted to them."

Increase in monthly budget

There was a time when public transportation was one of the cheapest modes of travel. With autos not ready for taking fare as per the meter, people are forced to spend around Rs 200 and above for one trip. Just because of autos, the monthly expenses of many citizens have increased considerably.

Due to the RTC workers' strike, the commuters who have passes and regularly travel by buses are facing hardships as the temporary RTC crew are not allowing bus passes for travelling and also, the bus services have been reduced considerably. The autos are charging huge amounts and even share autos are charging more than their regular fare.

Shradha S, a corporate employee at Sitel Industries in Cyber towers, Hi-Tec City, said that she had to pay Rs 860 for bus pass. However, now, the private staff on RTC buses were forcing pass holders to purchase tickets. Moreover, the frequencies of the buses have also decreased.

"I have no idea when the strike is going to get over, but it seems like this month half of my salary is going to be spent on travelling. Yesterday I had to get down at Begumpet for my personal work. From Begumpet till my office I had to pay Rs 330 to auto driver for a distance of 12km as Metro trains were also packed up."

Rithvik J, another software employee, said that he had to spend a total of Rs 350 for his one-way trip to office at Madhapur. He said, "The auto driver charged me Rs 350 as I had no other option than to hire auto till my office."

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