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E-rickshaw driver in Tripura commits suicide : crackdown on unregistered tomtoms

A e-rickshaw owner-cum-driver on Saturday committed suicide three days after the Tripura police launched a crackdown against the unregistered battery-operated rickshaws, police said.

According to police, Vivekananda Malakar, 49, owner-cum-driver of an e-rickshaw on Saturday killed himself by consuming poison at his rented house at Indranagar, on the outskirts of the capital city.

“Family members of Vivekananda told the police that he purchased the e-rickshaw on loan from a private bank. After the police launched the crackdown against the unauthorised two-wheeler, out of frustrations he ended his life,” police said quoting the family members.

The deceased”s family separately told the media that the government”s decision to halt unregistered e-rickshaw forced Malakar to death.

According to the joint transport commissioner Dibyendu Chakraborty, there are 9,000 to 10,000 e-rickshaws, locally called ”Tomtom” and ”Tuk-Tuk”, mostly unregistered, are plying in Tripura, since 2013 and carrying passengers. Only 45 to 50 such vehicles were registered so far.

“According to the the Motor Vehicles Act, the e-rickshaws must be registered and fulfil certain conditions before plying in the roads and carrying passengers,” Chakraborty told .

He said that there are High Court orders in this regard.

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