Roadside parking in Delhi markets could cost you up to Rs 1,000 a day | delhi news | Hindustan Times
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Roadside parking in Delhi markets could cost you up to Rs 1,000 a day

The penalty is applicable from 8am to 8pm on weekdays and Rs 50 will be added to the base fine of Rs 100 for each subsequent hour.

delhi Updated: Jul 12, 2017 10:18 IST
Vibha Sharma
Cars parked in Kamla Nagar, north Delhi, India.
Cars parked in Kamla Nagar, north Delhi, India. (Prateek Verma/HT File Photo)

You may have to pay a parking penalty of Rs 100 an hour for leaving your car on the road in areas under the North Delhi Municipal Corporation. The charge could go up to Rs 1,000 for a full day’s illegal parking.

The fines are part of a pilot project designed to prevent unauthorised roadside parking, a major cause of congestion on the city’s roads. If it succeeds, the east and south civic agencies could adopt the system too as previous drives to prevent people from parking illegally have flopped.

The north municipality will enforce the penalty on roads 60 feet and wider, mostly near marketplaces.

Delhi residents living along streets identified for the project will have to pay Rs 80 an hour for parking their cars by the roadside. Their vehicles will be towed away if they don’t. Even shopkeepers will be fined should they break the new law.

The pilot project will be launched by this month-end in Model Town and Kamla Nagar.

Read: Delhi’s new parking policy: Enforcement will be biggest task for civic agencies

The penalty is applicable from 8am to 8pm on weekdays and Rs 50 will be added to the base fine of Rs 100 for each subsequent hour.

Tailbacks, snarls and shrinking road space are growing problems for the city of 20 million, breathing the foulest air in the planet. The city has 10 million vehicles and toxic exhaust fumes contribute majorly to its air pollution.

The courts, National Green Tribunal and government have put curbs and introduced initiatives to reduce the pollution, while the municipal corporations launched extensive drives to fine and tow away vehicles parked at unauthorised areas. But the deterrents haven’t worked much.

“Issuing challans to every offender or towing away all vehicles from roadsides isn’t practically possible,” said Yoginder Singh Mann, the spokesperson for the north corporation.

Besides, the fines are designed to be lower than what existing laws prescribe.

Read: Parking on footpath in Delhi, may land you in jail, attract hefty fine under new policy

“The Delhi municipal act says the penalty depends on the vehicle’s weight, rather than the size. That way the challan amount will be between Rs 10,000 and Rs 20,000 for each vehicle. Moreover, we don’t have space to keep towed-away cars,” Mann said.

The north corporation doesn’t have tow trucks. It depends on private agencies and fellow corporations for such trucks during drives to prevent illegal parking.

According to experts, the solution to traffic congestion is multilevel parking lots and discouraging people from using surface parking spaces by making them prohibitively expensive.

The suggestion comes at a time the north corporation plans to double the rates for surface parking and by this month-end a pilot project will be conducted in Model Town.

The success of this project may have city-wide implications. The three municipal corporations have 244 surface parking lots with a combined capacity to hold 50,000 vehicles. Of these, 99 are owned by the north corporation.

The parking penalty project is initially restricted to Kamla Nagar and Model Town because these two areas have multilevel car parks. But people seldom use them because surface parking is “cheaper and convenient”. Also, the unpoliced option of parking illegally on roads is always there.

“We are expecting resistance from the people in the initial phase. That’s why only two areas have been selected for the time being. Based on the feedback, we might introduce changes,” said Renu Jagdev, the north corporation’s additional commissioner.

Puneet Goel, the commissioner of South Delhi Municipal Corporation, called the north agency’s step a good move.

“We will surely implement the scheme around multilevel car parking lots as their current use is extremely low. Also, it will reduce congestion on roads,” he said. The SDMC has six multilevel car parking lots.

Mohanjeet Singh, the commissioner of East Delhi Municipal Corporation, has appreciated the move too.

“We carried drives against vehicles parked illegally on Vikas Marg and challaned more than 1,100 vehicles. But this has not brought any drastic change to the situation. We will surely adopt the penalty parking scheme if it turns out to be successful in north Delhi.”

Bhure Lal, chairman of the Supreme Court-appointed Environment Pollution Control Authority, said the initiative would help dissuade people from parking on the roadside, but most of them won’t want to pay the recurring Rs 50 an hour.

“Unfortunately in areas such as Kamla Nagar, despite having a multilevel parking, people are congesting the roads. To ensure these facilities are utilised properly, the rates of surface parking lots should be increased manifold,” he said.