Updated 10:57 am, Jun 18, 2018

Taxing times: Now, pay fee for parking vehicles outside houses in 10 Punjab cities || SNE

By  Hindustan Times .
Apr 16, 2018

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Residents of areas under jurisdiction of 10 municipal corporations (MCs) in Punjab will have to pay fee for parking vehicles outside their houses, with the state local bodies department notifying a public parking policy which will be implemented by August 31. 

 

The state’s municipal corporations are Amritsar, Pathankot, Jalandhar, Phagwara, Hoshiarpur, Ludhiana, Patiala, Mohali, Bathinda and Moga.

 

As per the policy, shopkeepers, office-goers and others need to park their vehicles in off-street parking facilities. Long-duration parking (more than three hours) will be discouraged on on-street parking spaces, states the policy which was notified on Friday (April 13).

 

The parking fees and fines will be determined by the parking management wings which would be established at the local level. As per the policy, videography of violations will also be conducted and challans will be sent to the residents.

 

The policy with an aim to control multiple car ownership recommends that the cities will be divided into multiple parking zones and area parking plans, including integrated, plans will be formulated.

 

On-street and off-street parking will also be demarcated. Each lane and street will have an earmarked space for ambulance and notified green areas, neighbourhood parks and green spaces will be kept parking- free.

 

The parking management wings will comprise officials of municipal corporation and traffic police besides professionals.

 

Parking rates would be applicable based on time, day, duration and size of vehicle as larger vehicles will be charged more. The parking fee will be revised after every quarter, the notification says.

 

An online system will also be established for payment of challans and cash payment will not be accepted to bring in transparency. Also special teams will be formed for checking at night.

 

The on-street and public-owned off-street parking spaces in each zone will be managed by a single operator and para-transit vehicles such as auto-rickshaws, taxis, e-rickshaws, cycle rickshaw are likely to be given priority at on-street parking spaces. Also, electric vehicle-charging facilities will be set up in the cities and special arrangements will be made for the differently abled.

 

The need for policy

The notification says there was the need for the policy as there was an increasing demand for land for roads and parking spaces with rapid urbanisation of Punjab with 37.5 per cent of its population living in urban areas.

 

Free and unorganised parking is leading to chaos on roads besides erosion of pedestrian and green spaces, the policy says. It aims to encourage adoption of public transportation and discourage dependence on personal motor vehicles.

 

However, the policy has drawn flak from residents. Balpreet Singh, a Ludhiana resident, questioned the rationale of paying fee for parking vehicles on roads. “The common man is already paying under different taxes and now the state government has come up with one more.”

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