New Delhi, June 4 (IANS) Even as passengers have started arriving at the railway stations to go back to their native places or people commuting to their offices in Unlock 1.0, autorickshaw drivers across the city are worried about their income following the coronavirus pandemic.
While many of the autorickshaws are off the roads due to less demand, but those who are out on streets complain that they have to wait for hours for passengers. Speaking to IANS, Ajay Kumar, who drives an autorickshaw said, “We are getting the passengers, but there are very few these days.” He said, however, “we are getting the passengers for the stations, border area and bus stands, but there also we have to wait for the passengers for hours.
Narrating his plight, he said, “We are somehow managing our day to day expenditure. Earlier we used earn over Rs 800 -1,000 but now a days we are earning hardly Rs 300 to Rs 400 and it is quiet tough for us to pay the rent of the auto everyday.”
He said, the drivers need to pay Rs 250 to Rs 300 per day to the owners of the autorickshaws as rent. “Now whether we should fill the gas in the autos we are driving or pay its rent to the owners. It is very tough,” he added. Similarly, Satish Kumar, who also drives his own autorickshaw said, “We are not getting the passengers and we have to return with no passengers from many areas.”
“On number of occasions we have to wait for hours to get a passenger. There are lakhs of autorickshaw drivers in the city and we are hardly earning enough to feed our family,” he added. The Delhi government had allowed the autorickshaws to carry three passengers.
However, with a number of offices still closed and people preferring working from home given the spike in the number of Covid-19 cases in the national capital, there are very few people on streets. Many autorickshaw drivers also said that most of the people are coming out from their homes in their own vehicles so it also one of the reason for less demand for autos in the national capital.