Shoppers at Lajpat Nagar's Central Market were in for a surprise on Wednesday when they found the usual chaotic lanes of the market easier to navigate.
Coming down heavily on illegal parking and vehicles that are parked illegally in the market, leading to congestion, the Delhi Traffic police toed away a number of vehicles in a joint operation with the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD). While 73 vehicle owners were fined on the spot, 61 vehicles were towed away by the Delhi traffic police in a bid to decongest the area.
According to the civic body, the drive will intensify in the coming days and other markets, especially in South Delhi, will be targeted to rein in the parking mafia and decongest these markets.
“We realised that just lodging FIRs and complaints were making no difference as far as reducing traffic congestion was concerned. We decided to carry out enforcement drives so that people would think twice before parking their vehicles in no parking zones,” said Suman Majoomdar, director, enforcement cell of the MCD.
The civic agency has also given the Delhi traffic police a list of illegal parking lots run by the parking mafia who charge exorbitant amount from the people.
“The MCD had carried out a survey and we’ve got a list of areas where contractors are running illegal parking lots. We have circulated the list in all our departments and action would be taken,” said Ajay Chaddha, special commissioner of police (traffic).
The traders were a happy lot, as they have been demanding the civic agencies to carry out such drives to ensure there is walking space for the shoppers.
“This was really needed. Finally shoppers will be able to walk freely in the market. A significant number of them had stopped coming as the main roads used to be choked,” said D.N. Rajpal, secretary of Central Market.
“We have also suggested the traffic police to convert the market road into a two way once again.”
The traders have also demanded that rickshaws shouldn’t be allowed to ply on the main roads as they also contribute to the traffic chaos.
“We have requested the traffic police to restrict the entry of rickshaws on the main road and have suggested six points till which they can enter,” he added.