Monday, October 27, 2008

Tampered! Meters under scanner

Tampered! Meters under scanner

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The transport department, in a bid to check meter tampering by auto drivers, has developed a software which will hopefully solve the problem.

Speaking to Deccan Chronicle, joint commissioner of transport Vijay Vikram said, “We have proposed an amendment in the Karnataka Motor Vehicle Act, making it mandatory for all autos in the city to install digital fare meters. We have developed a software for these digital meters which will show any tampering. Auto drivers will be caught red-handed if they tamper with the meter. The moment a driver tries to make any changes in the meter internally or externally, “tampered” will be displayed on the meter.” The transport department had promised installation of electronic meters on all city autos after the Assembly elections, but numerous autos are still plying with the old highly tampered ones. However, now the transport department wants to ensure that the problem faced by commuters soon comes to an end.

It will be mandatory for all city autos to install the new hi-tech software.

Also, the transport department says that once the autos come for fitness certification at the RTO, it will ensure that autos without digital meters are not issued a certificate.

“We are planning to make the amendments this month. We have been getting numerous complaints from commuters in this regard and will make sure that the meters are installed in most of the autos as soon as possible,“ said Mr Vikram.

But the drivers say that installation of new digital meters will be costly and so they will not opt for it in old autos.

“The new meters will cost Rs 3,300, which is not affordable for us. Digital meters will be installed in new autos but not old ones. We had earlier requested the government to subsidise the cost of the new meters or provide Rs. 1,000 to the drivers. But they have done nothing about it. So we will not install new meters in old autos as there is no cooperation from the government,” said B.S. Narayanamurthy, president of Bangalore Auto and Taxi drivers’ Cell.


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