There are number of travel options in Chennai and of course overall India, Auto rickshaw is one of public transport easily available in cities and small towns - share autos has no boundary - but it has been a troublesome commutation forever and many a time a auto ride ends with quarrel related to fare. I have witnessed number of incidents on this line and sometime there will also be clashes between auto drivers and commuters settling on fare. It’s been very long time I traveled in an auto, but still I hear about the disputes continue to fall here and there on the line.
|image courtesy: google|
In Chennai, autos rarely drop their meters to calculate the fare fixed by authorities rather the amount is predestined by auto drives depending on the destination. But that doesn't mean a content commuting; the fare may rise above the spoken amount when we reached the destination. The auto divers will not hesitate on requesting excess fee above the amount showed on meters but we can’t blame them quite, as we all know the price of petrol has been on hike boundlessly and moreover almost auto drives come from poverty what can be their priority other than money.
I too know money is not all about and not all auto drivers are similar to mentioned above. There are very few drops for less fee or fare free understating the hardship of others, just like the one who helped my mom for just approaching his auto without knowing customers inside. He came back after dropping them at their place to assist mom walking back home bearing home needs, for which he requested nothing but left it to her choice of anything. For any emergence the auto comes first when others hesitate to help thinking not to get into any trouble.
Many autos bear words of ‘free for delivery’ (I don’t know they truly follows the lines), their sentiment towards women are high. The movies contribute to autos are much higher and many top actors had been auto drivers in films has showcased how much one could help with autos. The government’s revised auto fare announced on Sunday (after six years) have brought hope with both auto rickshaw divers and commuters; the autos that about to fit with GPS meters, electronic digital printers and panic buttons (on pressing, the police will immediately come to rescue the commuters in case of emergency), the auto ride sounds safe and comfortable.
New fare details:
Rs.25 for first 1.8 km and Rs. 12 for every additional km
50 % high on late night (11 p.m. to 5 a.m.) rides
Rs. 3.50 for every five minutes of waiting and Rs.42 for an hour.