Monday, September 23, 2013

New rates

The new auto-rickshaw fares have had people buzzing on the social media. Most of Chennai's residents have possibly never have had the experience of paying a standardized fare, having had to pay whatever was demanded - or to feel good at having negotiated a rate Rs.10 less than that.

The extent of the fleecing has become obvious with the introduction of the revised fare tables. From the numbers being reported, people have been paying a premium of anything between 30% to 40% over the current rates. All the auto-rickshaws are to have the revised meters fitted in before October 15; since September 15, they are expected to charge by distance, in line with the official rate cards which have been issued to each individual auto. 

No card, no fare. That's the intent. With so much of potential saving, folks should insist on paying by the card. Yes, fuel prices may have increased after these cards were issued. But the impact of those increases on these rates is marginal. So, no misplaced sympathy for the auto-rickshaw drivers. The moment people start showing such 'understanding and sympathy', we will go back to the earlier anarchy!

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