Mangaluru, Dec 08, 2016: A plan to install global positioning system (GPS) and display of advertisements on autorickshaws in Mangaluru is awaiting the nod of the Dakshina Kannada Regional Transport Authority.
If GPS is installed on autorickshaws, the Kudla Souharda Sahakari, a cooperative society formed by autorickshaw drivers, would be able to establish a call centre thereby offering autorickshaws on call to passengers across the city.
The sahakari has about 800 members and is prepared to provide GPS to any autorickshaw in the city provided the driver/owner abides by its rules, said Ashok Konchady, general secretary of the society.
The move is set to revolutionise autorickshaw commute in the city and provide a new experience to passengers.
Mr. Konchady told The Hindu that Bengaluru-based Telematics4U will provide GPS under its Auto Community Empowerment Scheme and ensure assured income for drivers through display of advertisements. The vehicle driver/owner will get regular income, to start with Rs. 1,500 a month, he pointed out. While many autorickshaw drivers in the city were enthusiastic about the initiative, a few have already commenced a campaign against the move saying that it would affect the drivers, Mr. Konchady regretted.
He said that drivers who follow the law of the land need not worry about GPS and being tracked; only those who go against the law would dread it. The sahakari would support only law-abiding drivers, he added.
While Deputy Commissioner K.G. Jagadeesha was enthusiastic about the move, the regional transport officer is yet to give permission, Mr. Konchady said.
In-charge Senior Regional Transport Officer R.M. Varnekar said that display of advertisements on any vehicle is not allowed under the Motor Vehicles Act and Rules.
Display of advertisements completely covering the rear-window of autorickshaws would block the view of vehicle drivers following such autorickshaws, he said and added that if sufficient space is left open, the Regional Transport Authority might consider the case.
He said that the RTA has the power to exempt certain categories of vehicles from the rules. The issue would be discussed with the Deputy Commissioner, who is the Chairman of the RTA, and a decision would soon be taken, he said.