The autorickshaw drivers' union has demanded a 40 per cent discount on compressed natural gas or a fare hike to compensate for the fuel price rise. The CNG currently retails at Rs 86 per kg.
Mumbai autodrivers' union leader Shashank Sharad Rao was quoted by Mid-day as saying that they have written to Chief Minister Eknath Shinde spelling their demands.
He said that all drivers were compelled to use CNG-run vehicles and they did so and added that government also let private vehicles to use CNG which widened the user base. Thus, they have to import in addition to local production which has led to price rise.
Rao elaborated that government holds 10 per cent stakes in Mahanagar Gas Limited and thus have written to both that local production of CNG should be made available to rickshaw drivers at a cheaper rate and delivered to them on priority. If that's not possible then they should be given temporary hike in fare to balance their expenses.
MGL hikes prices of CNG
MGL a week ago announced price of Rs 6 per kg for CNG and by Rs 4 a unit of piped natural gas with immediate effect. The price revision came amidst rising prices of the natural gas at source both internationally as well as for domestically drilled gas.
The last increase was effected on July 12 when the state-run utility hiked the retail price of CNG by Rs 6 per kilogram and PNG by Rs 3/SCM.