Prepaid autos from Sunday

State govt to fix fares, police to man service

By LELIN KUMAR MALLICK in Bhubaneshwar
  • Published 18.03.15

Bhubaneswar, March 17: Prepaid autorickshaws will begin operating from the railway station, Baramunda bus terminal and KIIT Square on March 22.

The transport department will fix the fares and police will manage the service. In the first phase, 150 autorickshaws would be included in the service from the railway station, while 100 autorickshaws each would ply from Baramunda and the KIIT Square.

The transport department has fixed separate fare structures for day and night. While passengers need to pay the base fare of Rs 30 per two kilometres for hiring an autorickshaw between 5am and 11pm, the fare for initial two kilometers between 11pm and 5am would be Rs 50.

Also, passengers need to pay Rs 10 per extra kilometre beyond the base fare during the day. "Passengers need to pay 30 per cent more for each kilometre between 11pm and 5am. Besides, we will charge an additional Rs 2 for each journey to be spend for the benefit of autorickshaw operators. It would include constructing rest shades and insurance," said regional transport officer, Bhubaneswar II, S.K. Behera.

Passengers travelling beyond 20km would be charged Rs 8 for each kilometre.

The transport department has conducted a survey for the prepaid service. It would help formulate a point-to-point fee structure with the railway station, the KIIT Square and the Baramunda bus terminal as origin points.

The fares would be displayed on boards at the counters. Police personnel would manage the counters, which would remain open 24X7.

All autorickshaw operators will have to produce the receipt at the counter after dropping the passengers to collect their fare.

Transport department officials said that in the second phase, the service would be extended to the airport and other important locations in Bhubaneswar.

"We have held discussions with the airport authorities for launching of the service, but they are yet to come up with a parking space for autorickshaws and the counter," said a transport official.

The police would also keep the address and identity proof of autorickshaw operators and issue them special identity cards after verifying their antecedents.

"This would also help us ensure safety of passengers, especially women," said a police official.

Members of the autorickshaw association said they would extend full support to the service.

"We are also planning to introduce a special uniform for autorickshaw operators engaged in the prepaid service," said the general secretary of Bhubaneswar Autorickshaw Mahasangha, Padman Kumar Samal.

The police had launched a similar service in Cuttack in October 2011.

The service covers Cuttack railway station, Badambadi bus stand and SCB Medical College and Hospital.