"Auto at doorstep, govt fixed rate + Rs.20, call 3999 3999 (90 lines)", says a frequently repeated ad in the classified section of The Hindu.
Not bad, I thought, if I need just pay Rs.42 +20. Reasonable when compared to the Rs. 80 I pay now one way. (The autodrivers at the stand nearest my place have hiked the fare by Rs.10. 'Petrol prices have gone up, madam,' they inform me.)
Tried the number yesterday and today and got the message, "This number is temporarily out of service". Is this some kind of a hoax? Will the Chennaites' dream of riding by metered fare ever be a reality?