Despite the Delhi government’s push for women drivers, only 14 out of 743 women applicants have got their e-autos registered after receiving the letter of intent, with many blaming tedious paperwork and high rate of interest for not buying the three-wheelers.
The AAP-led city government had issued the letter of intent to 4,261 people, including 2,855 male and 743 female applicants.“Out of these 743 applicants, only 14 women have registered their e-autos, while 273 men have done so,” according to official data by the transport department.Shamshon Nesha, a woman applicant, who got the letter of intent, said, “In the first place, it was difficult to get the loan processed. We had submitted our documents, but they kept dilly dallying it.
“We would check every 15-20 days, but were told that the documents were being processed. We had borrowed Rs 66,000 for the down payment, but after seeing multiple delays, we decided to surrender the letter of intent,” she added.Another woman applicant, requesting anonymity, said the rate of interest for getting an e-auto is quite high and it is unaffordable for them.
Government officials said there were supply issues due to some chip problem in the vehicles, which could be the reason for the low number of takers for the initiative.
They also said that since electric autorickshaws are new in the market, the rate of interest is going to be high, and with the passage of time, an equilibrium will be established.
An official said the Delhi government is providing 5 per cent interest subvention on the purchase of e-autos on loans along with a purchase incentive of Rs 30,000 under the Delhi Electric Vehicle Policy.The Delhi Transport Department had in October last year launched the scheme for registration of 4,261 e-autos, of which 33 per cent — 1,406 e-autos — is exclusively reserved for women drivers.
Meanwhile, Rakesh Aggarwal, president, Chhalak Shakti, an autorickshaw union, said the government should have been better prepared.”We are in favour of participation of women in economy and in running e-autos. But the Delhi government reserved 1,406 e-autos for women without any preparation, and only a meagre 14 vehicles could be registered so far,” he said.
Under the scheme, online applications were invited in October and November last year. A total of 19,846 applications were received from male applicants against the quota of 2,855 e-autos, and 743 applications were received from female applicants against the quota of 1,406 e-autos, officials said.Later, the government issued a statement where it said 663 e-autos under the women quota were allotted to the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) on March 3 this year with permission to operate through an aggregator or operator.e-autos driven by women are blue and lilac in colour to increase visibility.