The passengers are so tired of the auto drivers' ''we do what we wish'' attitude that they simply comply to whatever rates the auto drivers charge, left with very little options. When we talked to a private auto owner, he had another story to tell. Suresh, an auto driver, said, ''What can we do until and unless the Government does something for us? It's not as if we do not want meters. In fact, I am in support of implementing meters in every auto as this will give us an exact amount of money that we can earn from one point to another. Also, the shared auto drivers have a union and we do not so there is no support from any side. Whom should we contact if we face a problem?''
It seems not only the commuters but, the auto drivers, too, are having a hard time due to the absence of meters in the autos. The passengers blame the auto drivers and the auto drivers blame the government. So, whom should one complain about this problem? And when no one knows the root cause of the problem then, how can one find a solution?
On speaking to Gurgaon's Mayor, Vimal Yadav, he had a different explanation for the problem. He said, ''Though the Police Commissioner is very honestly looking into the matter but, still, the police can be blamed for the non-implementation of meters in the auto. The police could have pressurized the Transport Department, Haryana, to get results but nothing was done. What the citizens can do is unite as one and fight against the authorities to end the problem. A powerful public can change the current scenario."
When asked whether the coming state elections are a pressure point for the Government and will the implementation of meters reduce the vote bank, Yadav said that it has nothing to do with the elections and it will benefit the society. Yadav further added, ''Not only the citizens from outside the region are looted by the auto drivers but, the foreigners are also exploited. Where a small trip with auto would cost Rs. 50 or Rs. 60, the auto drivers ask for Rs.400 to Rs. 500 from the foreigners as they are completely unaware of the fare prices.''
Here, we can see three different views by three different people of the same society yet, the problem remains the same. It is not a problem that has just recently popped out in the region but, the Gurgaonites and the people from outside the region have been facing this problem since last four to five years, when private autos were first introduced in the city.
Mangat Ram Bagri, Ward 5 Councilor, who is a responsible citizen and feels for the residents when asked about this particular problem gave an interesting reply, '' The police is not keeping its promises and that is why this problem is never going to end. But, only the police cannot do everything. The people of Gurgaon should take a stand and raise their voice towards this problem. The state elections should not bother the implementation of meters. The auto drivers and the general public, both are precious voters. The installation of meters should not hinder the vote bank. One of the main reasons can also be the corruption in the Government that is slowing down the process."
Trying to understand the lacuna of the system and which department is responsible for installing or implementing this policy, Merinews called up Road Transport Authority (RTA), secretary Manoj Khatri. He clearly denied any knowledge and said that it was not their department and that we must take up the matter with SDO Transport. Promptly, we talked to the concerned person, but it was amusing and exasperating to hear that they were not the correct person to talk to and we must take up the query with RTA Secretary Manoj Khatri. While the authorities are playing shuttlecock with responsibility, it is the commuters who are paying the price- literally.
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