BENGALURU: At at time when autorickshaw drivers in the city are up in arms against app-based bike taxi services, an incident has come to light wherein an auto driver allegedly threatened a BMTC official with a knife over the issue of getting passengers.
The autorickshaw driver allegedly pointed a knife at the traffic controller and threatened to set buses on fire at the Sir M Visvesvaraya Terminal (SMVT) in Baiyappanahalli on March 18 evening. The traffic controller later lodged a complaint against the auto driver at the Baiyappanahalli police station for preventing him from discharging his duty.
According to the complaint, many passengers from Kolkata got off at SMVT and came to board BMTC buses at the bus station located close to the railway station. At that time, the auto driver forcibly parked his vehicle inside the bus station, which is not allowed. On noticing this, Traffic Controller Rajanna told the auto driver not to park inside the bus station, which angered the auto driver, who pulled out a knife, threatened him and used abusive language.
Rajanna lodged a complaint against auto driver (KA 03 F 6175) at the Baiyappanahalli police station for obstructing him from discharging his duty. The accused auto driver is absconding and the police are the lookout for him.
Rajanna said, “Every day, thousands of passengers arrive at SMVT station from Kolkata and most of them travel in BMTC buses than in autorickshaws as the bus station is close by. The auto drivers bring their vehicles inside the BMTC bus station and sometimes threaten our drivers and traffic controllers if we oppose them. Such incidents had happened earlier too. During rush hour, the parking place gets congested and the Baiyappanahalli police have earlier taken action against such auto drivers”.
“The harassment from autorickshaw drivers has increased and there is no safety for us. We are just doing our duty. We thought they will mend their ways, we even tried to make them understand. In some cases, some auto drivers have pulled out bus passengers for not choosing an auto. I do not know who is that person, who threatened me, but I can identify his face”, Rajanna said.
Another complaint against auto drivers is that they force bus passengers to get into their vehicles and ask them to pay double the fare, he added.