Pune. An autowala here, named Lakhpati Lal, decided to sell his unused antique fare meter. The meter is said to be almost a thousand years old. An auction was arranged here by the government officials in the state owned auditorium. Businessmen from all over the world were invited for this mega event.
According to Lakhpati Lal he received this meter from his ancestors. He informed us that the meter was never used, either by him or by any of his family members. They had fitted the meter in their Auto-rickshaw just to fool around with their passengers. But refused to use it whenever any passenger asked them to go by meter. Lakhpati makes lacs of rupees per month by doing so. By not using the meter he usually charges his passengers 1.5-3 times the actual fare per trip.
While talking to our reporter, a Japanese businessman, Koi-Nashakhori who finally won the auction and got the meter, said that since this was a very old meter and has never been used, it should be declared as a world heritage. He said, he wanted to buy this meter anyhow, to keep it in their Museum. “Such an old, but still new, machine will definitely be a center of attraction in Japan. It will bring more visitors to our museum and will help us financially,” added Koi.
The final amount for which the meter was sold was undisclosed. It is estimated to be around 2 million dollars. The autowala told us that now he is considering changing his name from Lakhpati Lal to Krorepati Lal as he is a Crorepati now. He has already applied for the name change in passport office. Reports are that Krorepati Lal has also been invited as a guest in “Comedy nights with Kapil”. Other auto rickshaw drivers are also considering putting up their meters for auction.