Auto…autooo…autoooooo!!!Views — By Sapna Krishnan on May 22, 2012 at 10:24 AM
Mention the word rickshaw and all hell will break loose. From the time I have been in Pune, there has not been a day when I haven’t thought about what’s up with the rudeness of these rickshaw drivers. Of course you have a few good hearted ones, but then my finger’s pointing at the larger section of them who flatly refusing to go to any place irrespective of the distance.
It’s difficult to really understand what these guys think. I’ve come across many who wouldn’t ply short distances and then there are some who won’t go long distances. C’mon it’s supposed to be their source of earning and if they are going to just sit around having their round table conferences or playing cards, how on earth do they feed their family?
I guess I am just very angry about their approach and how they literally loot citizens. And unfortunately, there’s not much that can be done to put them in place. A random conversation during one of my rides helped me understand a few reasons for which they refuse a trip. It ranges from no uniform, to eyesight issues to no required documents.
It’s unfortunate for someone who is stuck at a place where there is no frequency of rickshaws. And if you’re stuck during late hours, then it’s just going to empty your pocket. Rickshaw drivers charge you double and sometimes even triple the amount knowing very well that you would agree. Every time one of them gives me an excuse for a high charge as returning empty, my temper level hits the sky. Why is there a meter if they’re just going to charge what comes to their mind? That’s not all. Something which I will never understand is to charge extra for luggage. I don’t know how it could make a difference? Not like it’s an extra person and not like they even charge for extra people.
And how can we forget the unlimited strikes they keep going on? If there is a hike in petrol price, there is a rickshaw strike. If they are asked to move from petrol to CNG system, they have a strike. Tomorrow, I guess if it rains heavily they would go on a strike. It’s like, they just need an excuse.
If you are new to the city or just bad at math, it means you’re going to pay a little more. The numbers on the meter need to be multiplied to 10 and added to 1 and then you have your final amount to be paid. Why does it have to be so hard? Something that I have noticed in a few cities is a digital meter which projects the right amount to be paid. Why can’t Pune rickshaws have the same?
Rickshaw guys should understand that citizens do not have money trees growing at home, in the literal sense. We are also shelling out our hard earned money. If we really had money growing off a tree, wouldn’t we just buy ourselves a car.
So, is anybody listening?