Na hum extra maangte hain, na hum lete hain

By September 23, 2013 Autos, Driver Chronicles No Comments
Pic courtesy

Pic courtesy

(Translation for non-Hindi readers: Neither do I ask for extra money, nor do I take it when a customer offers it.)

My regular auto commuter friend, who has a clear tipping policy for five star auto drivers, was left dumbfounded recently. After peering at the meter, she gave a Rs. 15 tip to the driver. He calmly returned the money and uttered the words Madam, na hum extra maangte hain, no hum lete hain.

This, my friends, is the A+ grade for a five star auto rickshaw driver. You cannot ask for more. He agrees to your destination. Goes on meter. Has a perfectly functioning meter. Drives cautiously and follows all traffic rules. He is polite and courteous to a fault. And he refuses to take tips!

For someone in the service profession to decline a tip, what is it but the very definition of a moral compass?

There are two important and related questions that need to be answered in some detail.

  1. Why do some auto drivers ask for extra money?
  2. Why do many auto drivers NOT want to go to YOUR destination?

The answers are not as straightforward as you might think. There’s a method to their madness. At least for a segment of auto drivers.┬áStay tuned. Subsequent posts will shed light on these questions.




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