The Transportation Department of Burari DTO has mandated the installation and activation of GPS devices in auto rickshaws to ensure the safety of passengers. This measure means that auto rickshaws without an active GPS will not pass the fitness test, making it impossible for them to obtain a fitness certificate.

Immediate Implementation for Auto Rickshaws

Auto rickshaw drivers are urged to activate their GPS systems immediately. Failure to comply with this directive will lead to actions under the Motor Vehicle Act 1988. However, some auto unions have started opposing this new order. Notably, there are approximately one lakh auto rickshaws in Delhi.

Rationale Behind the Decision

A senior official from the Transport Department clarified that although GPS installation in auto rickshaws is not compulsory under the Motor Vehicle Act, the state government can mandate it. This initiative aims to enhance the safety of passengers, especially women, by allowing easy tracking of autos in emergencies. Delhi had active GPS in autos from 2012 until January 31, 2020, before the Transport Department suspended it in February 2020.

Opposition from Auto Taxi Union

The president of Your Own Auto Taxi Union, Santosh Pandey, has opposed the new order, citing the suspension of the GPS requirement in auto fitness by the Transport Department’s Special Commissioner in February 2020.

He argues that the attempt to impose this on auto drivers without a written order from the Commissioner is incorrect. He also mentions that the Indian Government excluded autos from the GPS ambit in November 2016 but mandated Vehicle Location Tracking Devices (VLTD) in all public vehicles in October 2018, which are installed along with a panic button.

Appeal for Compliance

Kishan Verma, the president of the All Delhi Auto Taxi Transport Congress Union, has requested auto drivers to activate their GPS to obtain the fitness check certificate. He emphasizes the importance of this measure for their continued operation.

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