New Delhi: Autos in the national capital, best known for fleecing commuters, may soon be taken off the roads with city government mulling a proposal to replace them with eco-friendly battery operated vehicles.
Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit, slamming the auto operators for their "poor standard of service", said government was working on alternatives to provide the commuters a better way of transportation.
"Their service is very poor. In today`s time, it is not acceptable. We are exploring ways to phase them out," Dikshit said in the state Assembly.
She said Government was in touch with auto makers Honda and Bajaj to provide battery operated eco-friendly vehicles so that autos could be replaced.
"Honda and Bajaj are working on providing battery operated vehicles," she said replying to a question by BJP leader Jagdish Mukhi.
Speaking on the issue, Transport Minister Arvinder Singh Lovely said government felt the need for an alternative to the autos.
"There is a need to rein in the autos. A system on the lines of radio taxis could be an alternative. We are working on it," he said.
Lovely said government has almost finalised a proposal to introduce a new mode of transportation for villages and other rural areas in the city.
"The vehicles will have a passenger capacity for six people. The service will initially be introduced in rural areas of the city," he said.
Giving details of steps to rein in the fleecing autos, he said this year 1,877 autos were fined by the enforcement wing of the Transport department while a total of 8,777 autos were impounded in the last one year for violating norms.
In total he said nearly 1.2 lakh vehicles were fined by his department for various offences in the last one year. He said 1,831 buses and 521 mini buses were impounded in the same period.
He said in 2010, a total of 10,015 commercial vehicles were fined by his department.
"We are committed to provide an eco-friendly mode of transportation to the citizens. From next week, we will intensify our drive against the polluting vehicles," Lovely said.
The BJP members also welcomed the government`s plan to phase out the autos from the city streets.
"We welcome the move. The people of the city should have a viable alternative to the autos which is known for harassing the commuters," Mukhi said.