Easy-on-pocket GPS devices for autos, taxis

In a move to ensure women safety, the Delhi Government on Wednesday said it will provide cheaper GPS devices to autorickshaw and taxi operators.

The assurance comes after the autorickshaw and taxi unions protested against the government’s decision to install GPS or GPRS based tracking device mandatory for all public vehicles, saying that it will not serve the intended purpose of stopping sexual harassment in the national capital.

The unions had raised the issue during a public hearing by transport minister Gopal Rai at Burari transport authority.

Rai said the government will ask the Transport Department to enlist the companies which can provide meters having inbuilt GPS ranging from Rs 8,000 to 9,000.

Autorickshaw drivers pay anything between Rs 12,000-18,500 for integrated fare meters, said Rajender Soni of Bharatiya Mazdoor Sangh. The ten empanelled vendors provide the GPS-enabled fare meters at varying prices.

The reasons for making installation of GPS-based tracking devices mandatory, as ratified by the Delhi High Court judgement in 2012, was to provide safe and reliable commuting, and transparent and temper proof system of metering – that would give proof of travel in the form of receipt.

Issuing a slew of new measures at the public hearing on Wednesday, Rai said the government will do away with the mandatory requirement of Class 8 certificate for renewal of commercial licences. He added that all forms related to Transport Authorities would be available in Hindi also.

For efficient handling of visitors’ queries, Rai asked the transport authority offices to set up help desks.

He directed the Transport Department to reserve first seat for disabled/blind persons in all DTC buses.

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