Auto rickshaw fares are set to increase in Bengaluru from December 1, which comes following demands by drivers as well as unions. In a notification put out on Monday, November 8, the state government revised the rates upwards. According to the notification, the revised minimum fare for two kilometres will be Rs 30 and every consecutive kilometre will cost an additional Rs 15. This has been revised upwards from a minimum fare of Rs 25 for the first 1.8 km and an additional Rs 13 for every additional kilometre. Waiting time will be free for the first five minutes and Rs 5 will be chargeable for every 15 minutes after that. The notification also states that an additional charge of half of the fare on the meter on top of the actual fare can be charged between 10 pm to 5 am.
â€śThe Bengaluru Regional Transport has considered the revision of auto rickshaw meter fares in detail and it is ordered that the revised prices shall come into effect from December 1 within Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) limits,â€ť the notification stated.
In addition, the notification also states that the passenger can carry up to 20 kg luggage for free and a charge of Rs 5 can be added for additional luggage up to 20 kg. The total additional luggage that can be carried by the passenger is capped at 50 kg.
In October, auto rickshaw drivers had demanded an increase in fares due to the present circumstances. The driving force behind the demand was the increase in the cost of essential commodities. â€śThere is an increase in the overall cost of living now. Prices of gas, electricity, groceries, childrenâ€™s education etc., all have gone up. Due to this, we are facing losses,â€ť said CN Srinivas, the General Secretary of the Auto Rickshaw Driversâ€™ Union (ARDU), affiliated to the Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU) had said. He further pointed out that the fares hadn't been revised in the last eight years.
However, auto drivers are not comforted with the current revision of fares, as they feel that it will not cover costs sufficiently. In this regard, they have decided to protest in front of the Deputy Commissionerâ€™s office in Bengaluru on Tuesday, November 9. â€śWe are opposing this (revision). We want at least Rs 16 per km and Rs 30 for 1.8 km,â€ť he said.