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Old 12th August 2019, 14:08   #1
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Default Rickshaw drivers punished for refusing ride – Driving license cancelled by RTO


Rickshaw drivers punished for refusing ride – Driving license cancelled by RTO

Auto rickshaw drivers in Mumbai have had to pay a heavy price for refusal to ply passengers.

Rickshaw drivers punished for refusing ride – Driving license cancelled by RTO-screenshot_20190812140922_chrome.jpg

A stern lesson to auto rickshaw drivers who refuse to ply passengers to required destinations was metted out by the Regional Transport Office. Around 918 auto rickshaw drivers in Mumbai and Thane found themselves relieved of their driver’s license in the past 6 months for refusal to ply passengers. These auto rickshaw drivers now cannot drive any public vehicle across the country and even though they have challenged this cancellation, their appeals have been rejected.

Some feel that this step taken by the RTO is indeed well deserved as many passengers have had to face refusals by auto rickshaw drivers who turn down their requests especially for plying over shorter distances.

The drivers blatantly refuse to ride, leaving passengers in the lurch where last mile commuting is concerned. There are others who cite that these drivers should be given another chance and taking such stern action takes its toll on their families.

Quote:
The drive was led by State Transport Commissioner Shekhar Chenne and launched earlier this year. To date, 12,343 drivers have been booked for various offences out of which 918 were found to be auto rickshaw drivers who refused rides. There were a total of 5,500 drivers who were found to ferry more than 3 passengers while 6,257 were plying their vehicles without wearing badges or carrying their licenses. 42 drivers were charged for overcharging their passengers.
Quote:
This drive was lead following a slew of complaints from passengers and was headed by Assistant Regional Transport Officer Tanaji Chavan along with his team of 14 squads. The drive was conducted in a swift manner, with officers posing as customers to nab the errant auto rickshaw drivers who were found to be refusing rides to passengers.
Quote:
Chenne said there will be zero tolerance for auto drivers who refuse fares. “These drivers will have to go off the streets,” he said.
Many of us must have faced these blatant ride refusals, sometimes even in dire situations. Ride refusals for extortionate fares is another common menace, when one rickshaw driver asks for an exorbitant fare and signals all the other drivers and they all refuse the ride except for that outrageous amount.
Stern Action for such errant Rickshaw drivers is definitely a welcome move which will serve as a deterrent to others and go a long way in curbing this menace.
Although permanent cancellation of license might be too harsh and affect their livelihood adversely, some sort of Deterrent like temporary suspension and a heavy fine is definitely called for.

Source Mumbai Mirror
Source Rushlane
Google Image for reference

Last edited by JS Kwt : 12th August 2019 at 14:12.
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Old 12th August 2019, 14:20   #2
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In Pune City, one can report such 'denial to ply autorickshaw' incidents using the Traffic Sahayak app. The app also has options for reporting other traffic violations.

PS: I have used the Traffic Sahayak app and thought of sharing that information here. I am in no way related to Traffic Sahayak app.
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Old 12th August 2019, 14:25   #3
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Default Re: Rickshaw drivers punished for refusing ride – Driving license cancelled by RTO

Send the cops over to Bangalore too.

Auto drivers refusing to ply and demanding absurd amounts is as regular as the sky is blue. Just yesterday, I had to wait 20 mins to get an auto for a 3 km ride in the rain from a Metro station, when there were at least 2 dozen of these idiots standing by, doing nothing but refusing passengers and/or quoting a hundred bucks to just start their contraption.

I finally managed to get one via Ola (oh, the irony), and the idiot gave me a 1-star at trip completion simply because he was pissed at the discounted rate I got. He could've made double that if he'd been reasonable quoting fare upfront.
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Old 12th August 2019, 15:00   #4
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Default Re: Rickshaw drivers punished for refusing ride – Driving license cancelled by RTO

One question though, is it just for refusing to ride for a destination? Damn the rule!!.
App based rickshaws get rides based on the current location they are in and most of the time they have a return ride. But, non app based rickshaws don't have that surety of getting a return ride back to their aligned stands and hence the charge is always double. If the driver thinks he may not get a return ride, he will not think of doing the first ride itself. Its a 50-50 situation for the driver and most of the time they return empty.

To me Cancelling the License and making him jobless is ruining a family. Cancellation should happen only in genuine cases, where the driver has blatantly overcharged or cheated the passenger.

Whether to ride or to sit quietly is his personal choice and no one can deny that freedom from him.
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Old 12th August 2019, 15:14   #5
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Default Re: Rickshaw drivers punished for refusing ride – Driving license cancelled by RTO

Quote:
Originally Posted by saisree View Post
Whether to ride or to sit quietly is his personal choice and no one can deny that freedom from him.
Autos are public transport. They are given license to operate and one of the condition is, he cannot refuse a ride.

Its like a restaurant, you cannot deny entry to anyone on any grounds.
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Old 12th August 2019, 15:17   #6
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Default Re: Rickshaw drivers punished for refusing ride – Driving license cancelled by RTO

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Originally Posted by saisree View Post

Whether to ride or to sit quietly is his personal choice and no one can deny that freedom from him.
Disagree, with no disrespect.

Auto rickshaw licenses are meant to supplement the government provided transportation services to the citizenry. These licenses come with conditions and guidelines for service delivery and charges, and are also limited in number.

These are normally considered as public transportation albeit privately owned (unlike State Govt owned city buses).

So, a rick-driver sitting with his un-hired rick on a public road, doesn't exactly have the "personal" freedom to deny service to a prospective customer. If he needs that freedom, I guess he must stay home for that day.

cheers
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Old 12th August 2019, 15:21   #7
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Default Re: Rickshaw drivers punished for refusing ride – Driving license cancelled by RTO

I face this everyday, I get an auto after 4 to 5 refusals, that too for a distance which is 1 kilometer away, I can walk it up if I don't get an auto but in the morning I am running late most of the times and hence the auto.

They just blatantly refuse, there should be some fear in their minds too although not allowing them to ply for months on end is a bit too much, but a harsh fine is definitely in order.
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Old 12th August 2019, 15:22   #8
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Default Re: Rickshaw drivers punished for refusing ride – Driving license cancelled by RTO

Many a times, Ola & Uber auto call politely, ask where do they have to drop me, tell me they're on the way & simply cancel the ride. It's the duty of the technology to find the next nearest drive which will be like 15-20 minutes away while the one refused would've hardly be 2 min away

Occasionally Uber & Ola owes a sorry stating it cannot find the next available drive & asks to try after sometime. Hope law handed over such incidents to let app takes its own course.

I've this gut feeling that it's a work of some lobbyist for such law enforcement
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Old 12th August 2019, 15:38   #9
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Default Re: Rickshaw drivers punished for refusing ride – Driving license cancelled by RTO

Quote:
Originally Posted by saisree View Post
One question though, is it just for refusing to ride for a destination? Damn the rule!!
Umm, I don't think you quite get the gravity of the situation.

1) The autos may be parked at an auto stand or may be traveling around. Once you ask the auto drivers if they will ply or they ask where you want to go, ever so often, they will just deny plying. At times, it is because they don't want to go to your destination, often they'll demand an unreasonable amount of money.

2) A lot of times, the auto drivers will gather around at auto stands/landmarks and just twiddle their thumbs with absolutely no intention of plying.

Point 1) and 2) may still be acceptable under freedom-to-whatever, but here's why it has to be punished.

3) These same clowns will threaten/assault app-based taxis and their customers for "taking away their livelihood"

4) These same clowns will create a ruckus demanding a ban on app-based taxis, asking for fare hikes and what not

Would you or would you not if your Uber drivers repeatedly refused service after being assigned.

Simply put, a lot of auto drivers seem to want to take commuters to ransom. I admit and admire that there are several auto drivers (esp the older generation) who are commendably committed to the job but there's far too many rotten apples.

Also, auto drivers have been warned enough to not deny passengers. That being said, although they've brought it upon themselves, cancellation of DL is too harsh. I welcome strict and continued action against these guys; if they're running a service, they pretty damn well provide it unconditionally!
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Old 12th August 2019, 18:49   #10
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Default Re: Rickshaw drivers punished for refusing ride – Driving license cancelled by RTO

Quote:
Originally Posted by saisree View Post
....
App based rickshaws get rides based on the current location they are in and most of the time they have a return ride. But, non app based rickshaws don't have that surety of getting a return ride back to their aligned stands and hence the charge is always double....
This was Mysore Road metro station in the middle of the day. There were nearly 50 people waiting for some form of transport and nearly two dozen autos, hardly a few of which actually moved in the 20 mins I was standing there, waiting for my Ola auto to arrive from 11 mins away (which turned to 15, then 20 due to a traffic jam en route). My home is a stone's throw away from a large mall in the area, so a return fare is nearly guaranteed most times of the day.

Quote:
....Whether to ride or to sit quietly is his personal choice and no one can deny that freedom from him.
I wouldn't mind an individual not wanting to ply (absolutely his choice not to earn his livelihood), but they gang up and often let no auto at that location ply, unless one gives in to their fare demands.

Loath to generalize, but I've had enough of this done to me in more than a decade in Bangalore to believe it isn't a one-off, and has nothing to do with app-based services either, because if anything, these guys behaved worse when there was no competition.

I once spent 10 mins negotiating multiple drop-off spots with an auto guy, thinking he may drop me somewhere along my route (popular spots so he'll get other riders) and I'll catch another one from there, but he just refused to go anywhere. I hopped in and said 'let's go wherever you want to go'.

P.S. A old-timer auto guy from my area had this to say: 'Saar, most of these chaps are from decent families. When they showed no other vocation skills or dropped out of school/college or simply couldn't get other jobs, their parent bought them an auto and paid bribes to get it licensed thinking they'll at least earn a living that way and stop depending on their parents, but these chaps are only interested in ganging together at public spots and shooting the breeze. Gets all of us a bad name, some of us actually need to earn our living'.

Last edited by Chetan_Rao : 12th August 2019 at 18:58. Reason: Anecdote
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Old 13th August 2019, 09:26   #11
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Default Re: Rickshaw drivers punished for refusing ride – Driving license cancelled by RTO

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Originally Posted by JS Kwt View Post
Rickshaw drivers punished for refusing ride – Driving license cancelled by RTO
This is a brilliant move by the authorities. Refusals are rampant in Mumbai and not just refusal, the auto drivers also sometimes choose to terminate rides mid-way making excuses like breakdown of auto, no fuel etc...

Refusals by autos are the primary reason why I ended up buying 2 extra cars. Am sure similar would apply to a number of commuters. Looking at the autorickshaw behavior, it is apparent why Mumbai car population has exploded.

Instead of cancelling license straightaway, it can be a point based system, where repeat offences lead to cancellation. However, it necessitates much stricter policing than just sporadic drives to catch offenders.
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Old 13th August 2019, 09:29   #12
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Default Re: Rickshaw drivers punished for refusing ride – Driving license cancelled by RTO

Call me cynical if you want. I believe that such drives by the "cops" are done just as a PR exercise for a short duration. After getting enough positive headlines, things go back to the way they were.

I have been seething over what I experienced a week back in Bangalore. I wanted to go from MG Road to Mission Road (approx distance of 3kms). And for 2 hours (from 5:45pm to 7:45pm) not one auto "idiot" was willing to come. When I approached a "cop" to complain, the idiot wanted me to catch the errant auto and hold him till the sub-inspector came to lodge a complaint.

There is a pre-paid auto counter just outside the Metro station on MG Road and the lady "cop" manning the booth was busy in reading the paper and watching videos on her mobile than be bothered to help commuters get an auto. When I called her out on her behaviour, she says that all the autos are on Ola and she is helpless.

Disgusting!!! There should be a definitive line separating the "cops" and thieves, but when it comes to traffic "cops" there seems to be no such line separating them.
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Old 13th August 2019, 10:03   #13
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Originally Posted by BeantownThinker View Post
Call me cynical if you want. I believe that such drives by the "cops" are done just as a PR exercise for a short duration. After getting enough positive headlines, things go back to the way the
In Mumbai, I doubt if such actions by the cops are one-off PR exercises.

While doing our MBA, we were off for our internships during the summer of 2010. One of us went to Mumbai to L'oreal (he was a young, inexperienced type of guy that FMCG companies love to pick up for sales/marketing profiles from B Schools).

He had gotten out of a railway station in Mumbai and into an autorickshaw for the very first time when the auto driver asked him where to. After hearing where to, the driver refused to ply the vehicle and asked him to get out.

Out of nowhere, an arm hit the driver on his head and a bellowing voice was heard, saying that if he didn't want to ply, he should hand over his permit and license and go home immediately. Turns out, that was a plain-clothed policeman who was lurking around the station to catch auto wallahs who were playing truant. After our guy told us about this incident, none of the Bangaloreans and Chennaites in our batch could believe it. Our respect for the city of Mumbai had shot up a bit more.

Last edited by locusjag : 13th August 2019 at 10:11.
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Old 13th August 2019, 12:19   #14
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Default Re: Rickshaw drivers punished for refusing ride – Driving license cancelled by RTO

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Originally Posted by lazy View Post
Disagree, with no disrespect.
So, a rick-driver sitting with his un-hired rick on a public road, doesn't exactly have the "personal" freedom to deny service to a prospective customer. If he needs that freedom, I guess he must stay home for that day.

cheers
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fordday View Post
Autos are public transport. They are given license to operate and one of the condition is, he cannot refuse a ride.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chetan_Rao View Post
I wouldn't mind an individual not wanting to ply (absolutely his choice not to earn his livelihood), but they gang up and often let no auto at that location ply, unless one gives in to their fare demands.

Thank you guys! I checked the MV act CMVR 1989 and the following are the rules for disqualifying a driving license. Given the rule 22, RTO is correct in cancelling the license.

Extract from the CMVR Act 1989
Powers of licensing authority to disqualify.—For the purpose of clause (J) of subsection (1) of section 19, the commission of the following acts by holder of a driving licence shall constitute nuisance or danger to the public, namely:—
(1) Theft of motor vehicle.
(2) Assault on passengers.
(3) Theft of personal effects of passengers.
(4) Theft of goods carried in goods carriages.
(5) Transport of goods prohibited under any law.
(6) Driver, while driving a transport vehicle, engages himself in activity which is likelyto disturb his concentration.]
(7) Abduction of passengers.
(8) Carrying overload in goods carriages.
(9) Driving at speed exceeding the specified limit.
(10) Carrying persons in goods carriage, either inside the driver's cabin in excess of its capacity or on the vehicle, whether for hire or not.
(11) Failing to comply with the provisions of section 134.
(12) Failure to stop when signaled to do so by any person authorised to do so.
(13) Misbehaviour with and showing discourtesy to passengers, intending passengers or consignors and consignees of goods.
(14) Smoking while driving public service vehicles.
(15) Abandoning vehicle in a public place causing inconvenience to other road users or to passengers in the vehicle.
(16) Driving vehicle while under the influence of drink or drugs.
(17) Interfering with any person mounting or preparing to mount upon any other vehicle.
(18) Allowing any person to sit or placing things in such a way as to impede the driver from having a clear vision of the road or proper control of the vehicle.
(19) Not stopping a stage carriage at approved stopping places for a sufficient period of time in a safe and convenient position upon demand or signal of the conductor or any passenger desiring to alight from the vehicle and unless there is no room in the vehicle, upon demand or signal of any person desiring to becoming a passenger.
(20) Loitering or unduly delaying any journey and not proceeding to the destination as near as may be in accordance with the time table pertaining to the vehicle, or, where there is no such time table, with all reasonable despatch.
(21) Not driving a contract carriage, in the absence of a reasonable cause, to the destination named by the hirer by the shortest route.
(22) The driver of a motor cab not accepting the first offer of hire which may be made to him irrespective of the length of the journey for which such offer is made.
(23) The driver of a motor cab demanding or extracting any fare in excess to that to which he is legally entitled or refusing to ply motor cab.
(24) Abandoning a transport vehicle as a mark of protest or agitation of any kind or strike in a public place or in any other place in a manner causing obstructions and inconvenience to the public or passengers or other users of such places.
(25) Using mobile phone while driving a vehicle.

Now given this scenario, Don't think the majority in the country(including me) know these rules. Govt and the Driving schools has to educate people on these rules through mass media and in their learners classes respectively.

There are other rules 20,21,23 along with 22 for which the Govt show enforce showing/pasting these rules in the Auto/Bus Stands legibly for passengers to see? What do you think?
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Old 13th August 2019, 12:44   #15
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Default Re: Rickshaw drivers punished for refusing ride – Driving license cancelled by RTO

I think we are a hypocritical bunch.

We want to punish each and every autowala when he refuses to go or asks for Surge pricing during peak hours, but we silently pay the same to Ola and Uber. We need to hold Ola and Uber to the same standards ATLEAST as the rickshaw walas.

On a seperate note, Bangalore has the worst autowallahs, compared to Mumbai. Mumbai autowallahs are saints compared to Bangalore guys.

Mumbai, auto guys return 3 rs change while in Bangalore, They charge 70 rs for a 30 rs ride and then keep the change (of 30 INR) if you give them a 100 rs note (Happened with me)
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