Commuters react angrily to Delhi auto fare hike

"Outrageous... the government has failed us... government has surrendered to autowallahs."

New Delhi: "Outrageous... the government
has failed us... government has surrendered to autowallahs."

This was how many Delhiites reacted to the city
government`s decision to increase autorickshaw and taxi fares.

Resident Welfare Associations also slammed the
decision and attacked the government for not taking the people
into confidence while calculating the CNG price hike impact
"which is hardly 25 paise to 50 paise per km on both auto and
taxi owners."

Office-goers who depend on autos to commute to office
and back home are the worst-hit, while some people felt that
three-wheelers would no longer be affordable for the common

Sandhya Singh, who takes an auto from her home in
Shahdra to Connaught Place every day, says she is hit hard by
the decision.

"This is an outrageous decision. Already we are paying
more for power, gas and for everything else. Now, the
government wants us to pay more for auto rides. With this, I
have to spend around Rs 100 extra every day on commuting,"
she says.

But, Aparna has a similar tale to tell. She travels
from Noida to South Extension for her work and says her
spending on commuting will become double.

"I spend around Rs 200 everyday on autos. Now I have
to spend an extra Rs 50-70 everyday... usually auto drivers
never go by metres... the government has failed us. This hike
is unwarranted," she said.

"I have failed to understand Delhi government`s logic
of increasing meter down charges by a whopping Rs 10 and
subsequent hike of Rs 2 per kilometer. Why is government
bending so much," an angry Ankur said.

Manmohan Mehra, secretary of Kiran Vihar RWA, said he
fails to understand why the government has "surrendered" to
auto unions.

"Hike in prices of diesel, cooking gas, school fee and
milk prices have already shaken out household budget. Now,
hike in auto prices will further make a dent. The school buses
will be first to increase the monthly rates for students," he

Meanwhile, autorickshaw unions welcomed the move to
hike fares, but said they would not shell out money for
installing GPS in their systems.

"We welcome the fare structure. It is really good. We
thank the government, Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit and
Transport Minister Arvinder Singh Lovely. But we won`t spend
money on GPS. If the government wants to install, let it
install on its cost," Rajendra Soni of Delhi Auto Unions said.


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