Punekars, soon you won’t have to fight with your autowale dada for the fare or beg him to take you a short distance. Relieved, right?
In order to make the autorickshaw services in Pune more transparent and efficient, the Maharashtra government is planning to start a mobile app for the autorickshaw drivers in the city.
Sanjay Raut, the deputy regional transport officer informed that the decision to introduce a mobile app for Pune’s autorickshaw drivers was recently taken in a meeting with Diwakar Raote, the state transport minister.
“Presently, the plan is at a very initial stage. A preliminary survey of what is required and challenges for its functioning will be undertaken and then, an agency will be finalised to develop the app. This is likely to take some time,” he said.
The government’s decision to have an app for autorickshaws might have come a little too late, given that there already are a few companies that have the app service for autorickshaws.
But it is the arrival of app-based cab services like Uber and Ola that has made things harder for autorickshaw drivers.
Talking about this change, Bapu Bhave from the Autorickshaw Federation Union says, “Earlier, rickshaw drivers used to earn Rs 500- Rs 700 per day. This went down by 40 percent when the cab services began.”
“There are apps developed for autorickshaws, but they have all been developed by private companies. There was never any effort from the government to develop a mobile application for autorickshaws. Presently, under the Smart City project, many rickshaw unions have been demanding that an app for rickshaws be developed by the government,” said Nitin Pawar, convenor of the Rickshaw Panchayat.
With an app created and managed by the government, the drivers will directly get the money instead of splitting the fare with the private companies.
The rickshaw drivers will definitely have to face many challenges when they start using their own app, but things will change for their good.
Talking about the problems commuters face, Nilesh Dave says, “In case of autorickshaws, the problem is firstly that most are not willing to ferry passengers over short distances and at odd hours - late night and early morning. Then, most autorickshaws do not ply by the meter and hence, overcharge.”
“A mobile based application for auto rickshaws will be very useful for commuters. Also, if the district administration takes the initiative to develop app, then commuters will not have to shell out extra cash on fares, which is important,” says commuter Neeraj Dahiwal.
Cover image source: india
Information source: hindustantimes