MEERUT: About two weeks ago, a woman, 30, from Noida on her way back home from work hailed an auto. There were three men inside — it was a shared auto. After she got in, she was allegedly abducted, taken to a desolate spot in Hapur and gangraped. But CCTV cameras could not offer a look at the registration number of the vehicle and it took days for the police to arrest the three suspects.
With the growing instances of such crimes, Hapur Police has come up with an initiative to make it easier to track autos — a four-digit ID in addition to the registration number.
“Often, the registration number at the back of the vehicle is not captured on CCTV cameras. That makes it difficult to trace autos when a crime takes place.
“The four-digit ID will instantly help us identify the vehicle by matching it with our database,” Mishra added. “It’s also easier to memorise than registration numbers.”
The code begins with an ‘H’, for Hapur, and is followed by four digits, the first of which refers to the route the auto plies. The four-digit code has to be displayed in a large, bold font on the sides of the vehicle and at the rear. Besides, the driver’s complete information has to be displayed on a plate, much like a registration plate, at the rear. “It is a good move. It will be easy to remember the number in case we forget something in an auto too,” said a commuter.
By now, the exercise has covered 4,167 of 7,125 autos in the district.
Last year, Visakhapatnam had, in a similar project, attached tracking devices to 1,000 autos in the city and assigned QR codes to each in a pilot project to curb crimes against women. At the beginning of a trip, the rider has to scan the QR code or enter the registration number and then enter the destination. A mobile app can be used to send a distress signal, to which a command control room responds.