Revise auto fares considering fuel price hike, HC tells govt
Pointing out the hike and fluctuation in the petrol and diesel prices, the Madras High Court directed the state government to revise the fares of autorickshaws in the State in a way that benefits both the autorickshaw holders and the public.
CHENNAI: Chief Justice Munishwar Nath Bhandari, sitting with Justice D Bharatha Chakravarthy, passed the direction disposing of a petition filed by advocate SV Ramamurthy. “State may revise the fares of the autorickshaws, periodically, looking at the fluctuation in the prices of petrol and diesel. A mechanism for revision of rate to the benefit of the autorickshaw holders and also the passengers may be appropriately evolved by the State,” CJ Bhandari held.
He further mooted an idea to the State that it may come with a system where fluctuation of the rates of petrol and diesel may reflect in the fare of the autorickshaws. “It could be done by using the software in such a manner where the rates may be revised automatically by upgrading the mechanism on the meters,” the CJ noted.
The petitioner, in his affidavit, wanted the court to pass directly enforce a 2013 judgment directing all the autorickshaws to install the electronic meters to restrain auto drivers from demanding exorbitant rates from the passengers.
“Even as the court had directed autorickshaws to install electronic meters, the meters are not working properly. Therefore, meters should have the facility to generate printed bills for the public,” advocate Ramamurthy prayed.
R Shunmugasundaram, Advocate General, submitted it would cost much to install the electronic meters equipped with a printer facility. On recording submissions, the bench directed the State to stringent actions against autorickshaws that do not have or operate the electronic meters.