Go back to
Home » My Kolkata » News » No Totos, autos on highways: Government tells district magistrates


No Totos, autos on highways: Government tells district magistrates

Totos are locally made e-rickshaws that do not have any registration and are illegal in the state, said an official

Subhajoy Roy, Kinsuk Basu | Published 06.09.23, 09:19 AM
Representational image

Representational image

File image

The state transport department has asked all district magistrates to ensure that “Auto Rickshaws, Totos and other three-wheeled passenger vehicles” do not ply on national highways, state highways and other important district roads.

The letter from the secretary of the department, Saumitra Mohan, on Tuesday, says that these vehicles were running “in violation of extant government orders”.


The government orders do not allow any of these vehicles to run on highways or major roads, said an official.

Totos are locally made e-rickshaws that do not have any registration and are illegal in the state, he said.

Earlier restricted to the districts, now these three-wheel contraptions are a common sight in many parts of Calcutta like Kasba and Behala. Salt Lake too has a large number of them.

E-rickshaws of only certain brands have government approval after having cleared basic safety tests.

Autorickshaws, even if they have valid permits, cannot ply on a national highway or state highway, said the official. The autos have designated routes, allowed by regional transport offices, but they are never given permits to run on highways.

In reality, many of these vehicles are found to ply
on stretches of highways,
leading to frequent accidents, officials said.

Tuesday’s letter was to prohibit these vehicles along highways and major thoroughfares.

“This not only creates traffic congestion on these roads/routes but often results in fatal accidents. The same also slows the movement of vehicles on national and state highways,” the letter says.

The department has urged the district magistrates to involve various stakeholders in making a decision.
The local police, the municipalities/municipal corporations/panchayats could be consulted.

“The district magistrates will specify areas under each local body or municipality for these vehicles to operate. In order to operate within the jurisdiction of a particular municipality, the owner has to be a resident of the municipal area,” Snehasis Chakraborty, state transport minister told Metro.

“A person will be allowed to own only one e-rickshaw. The district magistrates will also try to create a plan wherein e-rickshaws in a particular region can operate in shifts to bring down road congestion,” the minister added.

A department official added that the district authorities can even prohibit their movement on select roads inside the districts if they
feel so.

The letter was not given to the Calcutta Municipal Corporation though officials said they could be writing to the civic body soon.

Last updated on 06.09.23, 09:21 AM

More from My Kolkata