Delhi Govt takes action against electric rickshaws
Delhi debates over the use of electric rickshaws even as the Government, city administration and traffic police has decided to crack down on manufacturers, dealers and operators who have failed to meet the three month deadline to obtain certain approvals.
Over 300 e-rickshaw drivers of the Battery-operated Rickshaw Chalak Union protested outside BJP headquarters, while over 100 e-rickshaws were confiscated by the city’s transport department. This was as the battery operated vehicles had failed to receive ‘type approval’ mandatory for technical specifications and design of the vehicle. These e-rickshaws mushrooming all over Delhi has been rendered illegal as per notification issued by Ministry of Road Transport and Highways on April 24, 2014. E-rickshaws have not only added to the cities woes but also pose a threat to lives of passengers.
The policy with regard to electric rickshaws is still unclear as vehicles with motor power of less than 250 watts that travel at less than 25 kmph are regarded as non motorized vehicles that do not need to be registered with Transport Department. However, Energy & Resources Institute, Delhi has surmised that e-rickshaws have engines between 650 and 1000 watts and are still unregistered.
Blamed for violation of Motor Vehicle Act, these e-rickshaws are smaller than an auto rickshaw but can seat more passengers. It costs the same as riding a cycle rickshaw but moves faster. Political parties have come together to push for clearance of these vehicles with BJP, Congress and Aam Aadmi Party seeking to win the favour of these estimated 1 lakh electric rickshaw drivers prior to assembly elections in Delhi later this year.
via Economic Times