several commuters said most auto-rickshaw drivers now charge a minimum fare of Tk100 for any distance, and they often refuse to make short trips.
The government has decided to increase the number of CNG-run auto-rickshaws in Sylhet without adopting any strict or effective measure to ensure hassle-free travel for passengers.
Although the four-stroke three-wheelers are a major cause of traffic congestion in Sylhet city,The CNG-run vehicles, however, have not readjusted fare meters to comply with government-fixed rates.
The drivers, however, defend their position saying owners charge them a high rental price – Tk 800 to 1,000 per day. They also claim that extortion and harassment by traffic police cost them a lot.
A driver told the that Police, in most cases, intercept us on the road and demand Tk1,000 as extortion for plying without meters. If we refuse to pay the illegal money, they file a case,”
SMP additional commissioner (traffic) said a huge number of cases are filed against auto-rickshaw drivers and their owners, but that does not deter them from charging extra fares or rent.
M.Hussain a professor of SUST said auto-rickshaws are necessary for private travel in the city.