Bengaluru: Take a shared auto from Metro station

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BENGALURU: Commuters travelling between Indiranagar and Embassy Golf Links can now use shared autorickshaws for first- and last-mile connectivity.

HAIL App, a project funded by the European Union, has launched an app for regular Metro users through pre-fixed routes and rates. “The focus is to offer reliable and affordable last-mile service. The ride-booking platform acts as the medium,” said Manju Menon, project lead, Namma Auto project, which developed the app.

The fare is fixed at Rs 30 per seat and available in Indiranagar as of now. The app-maker is looking at crowd- sourcing more routes. “The next phase is to expand the service to four more Metro stations, before covering all of Bengaluru,” she said.

While most of their autorickshaws are run on LPG, they are now planning to shift to environmental-friendly electric autos. “It’s a win-win for both auto drivers and passengers. While auto drivers will get a steady income, regular Metro users can avail reliable and affordable last-mile connectivity. The idea of fixed routes and fixed rates works well for regular commuters,” said Menon.

The Namma Auto project is also offering its drivers code-of-conduct training to improve their ability to interact with customers; they are enrolling drivers to government insurance schemes and facilitating loans to help them their shift to sustainable vehicles. It has formed a society to financially empower auto drivers and their families.

Unlike cities like Chennai, Bengaluru doesn’t have a shared auto concept. This is because BMTC holds the exclusive stage-carriage permit which allows it to pick up and drop passengers from multiple points. Many passengers say shared autos are sustainable since they offer rides at an affordable cost.