In what is a clear violation of rules, overcharging is rampant at parking lots across the city with Rs 20 being charged for each entry of a car against the mandated charge of Rs 10 at most lots.
To check this for herself and after having received several complaints, municipal corporation additional commissioner Sarita Malik visited the Elante Mall parking lot (outside the mall premises) on Saturday and Sunday. Of course, she was overcharged.
The upset official then fined the contractor Rs 10,000 on Saturday and Rs 9,000 on Sunday, after conducting an inspection and finding other glaring lapses on the part of the contractor, Lal Singh and Company. This is the fifth fine on the contractor during the past few months and seven fines during the contract period invite cancellation of the contract.
The additional commissioner also found other violations like non-functional CCTV cameras and no installation of e-ticketing machines. Attendants were also found without proper uniform and short-staffing with no attendant for every 50 metre.
In its reports, HT has been highlighting the menace of overcharging at the parking lots.
Based on these, the Finance and Contract Committee (F&CC) had decided in August 2014 that for overcharging, the fine amount will increase exponentially.
When contacted, Sarita Malik, said, “We will not tolerate violations. This was a surprise check and we noticed several violations. Surprise checks will be conducted at other parking lots too and action taken if the contractors do not comply with the directions.”
Parking contractor Lal Chand said, “I always instruct my staff to follow rules, but they tend to overlook guidelines. I have fired some of them and will ensure that all guidelines are followed.”