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Diktat to mend auto manners

The iron bars fitted in autorickshaws for the protection of the vehicle’s body will have to be removed within a month, a senior officer with Patna traffic police said on Friday.

Rajeev Mishra, the newly appointed Patna traffic superintendent of police (SP), said he would bring about a few changes for smooth movement of autorickshaws.

Also, autorickshaws moving towards Kargil Chowk from Patna Junction will not be allowed to halt near the roundabout for long. They will have to be on the move all the time.

“The autorickshaw drivers have been given a month’s time to remove the temporary protection bars, which have been fixed to their vehicles. The Motor Vehicles Act, 1988, states that no private or commercial vehicle can have anything fitted on the vehicle’s body. The rule will be implemented for autorickshaws,” Mishra said.

He added that almost all autorickshaws have protection bars fitted in the front and rear of the vehicles.

“As a result, most of them tend to drive rashly knowing that nothing would happen to their vehicle if they dash against other vehicles. The drivers turn reckless and deliberately drive rashly. But the vehicles they slam into get dents and scratches. The auto unions have been intimated about the order and they will have to remove the iron bars from their vehicles within a month. If not, we will penalise them under the provisions of the Motor Vehicles Act,” Mishra said.

He added that the police were also mulling a change in auto routes to streamline the traffic situation.

“As of now, autorickshaws that ply from Patna Junction towards Kargil Chowk and back, will have to start from the station, take the route touching Fraser Road, Gandhi Maidan and reach Kargil Chowk. However, at Kargil Chowk, they will not be allowed to stand in a haphazard way as they do now. There is a path near the petrol pump at Kargil Chowk and if the autos need to pick up passengers, they will have to stand on the road in a queue,” the traffic SP said.

“When they start towards the station area, they will not take the Gandhi Maidan route, which passes by the police headquarters. They will have to take the route along Gandhi Maidan, which passes through the Udyog Bhavan area. There are some gaps along the route but they have been barricaded now. This will stop the autorickshaws from taking sudden U-turns. They will have to drive throughout and under no circumstances will they be allowed to stand anywhere after Kargil Chowk to pick up passengers,” the officer said.