With new law, rickshaws all set to run across city
The Draft Delhi Cycle Rickshaw Act 2010 being jointly prepared by Delhi's three civic bodies will allow cycle-rickshaws to ply all over the city. This manual mode of public transport had so far been restricted to Delhi's Walled city and a handful of residential colonies.
Except the national highways and Ring Roads and the areas marked by 'No Entry' signs under the Delhi Master Plan 2021, the cycle-rickshaw will become ubiquitous on all arterial roads —- in the 12 zones under the MCD, the Delhi Cantonment Board (DCB), and the NDMC.
Following a recent High Court order, which ruled that the MCD's policy of limiting the number of cycle-rickshaws in the city was unconstitutional, the draft Act proposes that "there shall be no quota limiting the number of cycle-rickshaws that can be registered. These numbers shall be solely determined by the demand, carrying capacity of colony roads and availability of parking space".
Previously, the MCD capped the number of licences to operate cycle-rickshaws at 99,000, also limiting the areas where cycle-rickshaws could operate, granting licences only to cycle rickshaw owners, and allowing confiscation and destruction of cycle-rickshaws that violate the law.
Section 5(1) of the Draft Cycle Rickshaw Act proposes that the registration will be provided by the appropriate authority, which includes the DCB, MCD, and the NDMC, respectively for areas falling under their jurisdiction. It proposes that registration would be "granted instantly on payment of prescribed amount".
The Act proposes the registered vehicles have a Radio Frequency Identification Device and "sensor chips for the tamper-proof identification and registration of rickshaws".
A rickshaw-puller, Section 7 proposes, should be no less than 21 years, acquainted with major streets, know traffic rules, possess a good physique, and not convicted in any major offence. The person also has to make sure his uniform is clean, and does not pull the rickshaw in an intoxicated state. Section 10 of the Act states that a licensee "must have sufficient private space for parking" and should not park anywhere.