With Diwali around the corner, shoppers at Central Market, Lajpat Nagar, are facing increased parking problems as the parking sites there have no parking contractors or attendants. The MCD and Delhi government were supposed to upgrade the three parking sites but have hit a deadlock leading to a delay in getting fresh contracts.
With the termination of the previous contracts, Lajpat Nagar's parking sites have become free of cost and as a result, chaotic. There are no attendants and cars are parked haphazardly. People who park their cars early in the day face problems in taking them out later as other shoppers park their cars behind them.
The contracts for the three parking lots that can accommodate more than 500 cars were terminated in February when the MCD handed the sites over to the Delhi government for upgradation.
However, last week, the MCD Standing Committee raised some objections to the project.
SA Khan, in-charge of MCD's remunerative project department, said that in view of the developments, they might have to cancel the project and ask Delhi government to return the parking sites.
"We had handed over the parking sites for upgradation. In return, the Delhi government was to compensate our losses. At about R9 lakh a month, the total bill has now come to around R50 lakh," he said.
The market association and resident welfare association members say the parking situation is discouraging shoppers from coming to the area.
"We have been getting in touch with the traffic police and the Delhi police but they say they are helpless since the sites belong to the MCD," said Arun Gupta, president of the RWA in Lajpat Nagar and also Pushpa Market in Central Market.
The MCD had in January this year handed the sites over to the Transport Department (TD) of Delhi government. The TD was supposed to upgrade the sites and install parking meters there so that private contractors do not fleece the public.