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1,000 e-rickshaws introduced in North 24 Parganas

 Team MP |  2017-03-10 18:08:45.0  |  Kolkata

1,000 e-rickshaws introduced in North 24 Parganas

In the ongoing operation to replace the totos plying in the state, one thousand e-rickshaws were introduced in North 24 Parganas on Friday.

State Transport minister Suvendu Adhikari and Principal Secretary (Transport) Alapan Bandyopadhyay officially introduced the vehicles at an event in Barasat.

So far, 4,000 totos have been replaced by e-rickshaws all over Bengal.

This is a major step by the state government towards promoting e-vehicles.

There are around one lakh totos and another one lakh vanos, both of which are indigenously-built passenger ferrying vehicles, in the state.

Steps have already been taken to replace the vanos by e-carts.

Adhikari on Friday said that many totos did not have any registration numbers and thus they were illegal.

 The passengers, in case they received injuries in an accident while travelling in totos, cannot get insurance.

E-rickshaws, however, are legal and in case of any accidents passengers will get benefits of insurance.

E-rickshaw owners will also have to pay yearly insurance premium.

Adhikari said that Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had asked him to ensure that no toto driver is rendered jobless after the totos are replaced.

"I assure you that no toto driver will become jobless. On the contrary, they will get a legal status which they did not have so far," Adhikari said.

When they submit their old vehicles, toto owners will get a concession of anything between Rs 15,000 and Rs 20,000 from the e-rickshaw manufacturers.

Totos are Chinese-made vehicles assembled in India. They are devoid of safety but have became immensely popular among commuters as they are cheaper than auto rickshaws and also drop the passengers at door step.

However, during monsoon, passengers not only get wet but also risk sustaining injuries while travelling in the unsafe vehicles.

A manufacturer of an e-rickshaw said his firm had carried out research for several years before introducing the vehicles in the market.

"The e-rickshaws are safe and they have proper braking system. During monsoon, the passengers will be safe and not get wet. Also, they are more comfortable than totos," he said.

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