Most of them said auto-rickshaws were still available on the app but they experienced unusual delay in hailing one
Representative image. Credit: DH Photo
Commuters used to hailing auto-rickshaws over the aggregator apps experienced slight disruption despite finding no significant changes.
Following the state transport department’s ban on auto-rickshaws over Ola, Uber and Rapido, DH spoke to commuters to understand the situation. Most of them said auto-rickshaws were still available on the app but they experienced unusual delay in hailing one.
A passenger who travelled from Konanakunte Cross said, “I use Uber daily as regular autos also charge the same as Uber. I noticed a slight drop in the fare today than the amount I paid for my previous rides.”
The fare was still higher than the sum fixed by the Transport Department (Rs 30 base fare for the first 1.8 km and Rs 15 per subsequent km).
Sanketh Hiremath summed up the commuters’ condition. “With or without Ola/Uber auto, In #Bengaluru, #autorickshaws don’t ply without asking for more than the actual rates,” he said in a tweet, adding that he couldn’t get an auto even after 30 minutes of wait.
Win-win for both
Those travelling in the IT corridors said auto drivers have been using a trick for months. “I am a regular on the HSR Layout and Bengaluru route. For some months now, auto drivers would call me after accepting the booking, offer a cheaper fare and cancel the ride. This has worked out well for both of us,” said Ganesh S Hegde.
Sarita Karthik, a homemaker from Kanakapura Road, said regular auto-rickshaws have been demanding fares on par with apps, if not more. “In my locality it is almost impossible to get a regular auto. So, Ola and Uber autos are my only option.
Sarita said she preferred the aggregator apps. “Regular autos demand high fares. On aggregator apps, you have features like tracking and security when we send children out. The government must consider these before banning the services,” she added.
Some like audiologist and speech therapist Bibika Sharma from Whitefield were ready to pay more on aggregator apps for convenience’s sake and to save time.