Autorickshaws carrying more school children than they should has always been a problem and the only way to stop this practice is strict enforcement of the law by the traffic police and transport department.
If an autorickshaw is caught flouting the rules, the licence and permit of the driver must be made note off and if he is caught a second time for the same offence, then both his permit and licence should be cancelled and his vehicle seized.
We have seen autorickshaws packed with more than eight children, which is completely illegal and dangerous. If they are involved in an accident, it is the children who get injured or lose their lives. So an awareness programme is essential to make sure the school managements and parents know the disadvantages of children travelling in overcrowded autorickshaws.
This could be possible if the traffic police is present during the parents and teachers’ meetings in schools to educate them on the dangers of crowded autorickshaws. Parents must be told to check before letting their child travel in an autorickshaw if it is carrying more than six children and inform the traffic police if it is. These simple measures if followed strictly, will help in keeping a check on the autorickshaws and the children’s safety.
(The author is a former Additional Commissioner of Police (traffic) Bengaluru and current ADGP of Crime and Technical Service)...