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16 Jan 2021, Edition - 2013, Saturday

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Coimbatore

Autorickshaws continue to fleece passengers

Covai Post Network

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Commuters rushing out of the railway station to reach to their localities are still being haunted by the astronomical fares charged by the auto-rickshaw drivers. Unperturbed by the Government order to use metre fare, the drivers fleece the passengers in Coimbatore.

Fleecing is nothing new for auto-rickshaw drivers of Coimbatore. They are famously known to even flout direct orders issued by the state government to use metre fare. They did not yield to the District Administration’s intervention and went on a rampage, damaging autos that collected metre fares, saying that the money was not enough.

To rub in the irony of the situation, they protested against the orders!

Commuters are forever hit by this crisis as they are charged more for even small trips.

“I live one and a half kilo meters from the junction and the auto-rickshaw driver charged me Rs. 70. When I asked about the metre box, he said that they do not use it after 10.30 pm,” complained S. Kalaiselvi, a resident of Variety Hall Road.

According to an order passed by the Madras High Court, the minimum fare for a ride (1.8 kilometre) is fixed at Rs.25. An amount of Rs.12 should be collected for each additional kilometre. But, auto rickshaw drivers continue to blatantly ignore the order.

“People are asked to pay a minimum of Rs. 100 if the journey is above three kilometres. I paid Rs. 150 to reach Hopes from Railway Station,” C. Manjula, a septuagenarian, said.

The matter had been taken frequently to the High Court by consumer welfare organisations in the city, and they had even called for a helpline number for such violations. But, nothing has stopped the auto rickshaw drivers from fleecing the passengers.

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