Owners of big shops and showrooms are in a quandary after the Supreme Court on Thursday said that they can continue running their businesses only if they create adequate parking space.
Vipin Chabbra of CTC Plaza mall on Ring Road (Ashram) said that the building already accommodates 40 cars within the complex. With the court silent on what constitutes a big shop and the stretch of road on which CTC Plaza sits not a notified commercial stretch, Chabbra is not sure whether to welcome the court decision.
"It is not possible to create parking space from nowhere. At the most, we (traders) can arrange for a valet parking if the government provides us with parking space nearby," said Narendra Madan of Kashmere Gate Automotive Parts Merchants Association.
Trader after trader echoed the view.
Ram Lal, president of Karol Bagh Traders Federation, blamed the government for the present mess. "The bureaucrats in civic agencies have been dragging their feet over the proposed multi-level parking lots. The MCD had sanctioned a multi-level parking lot at Karol Bagh in 1985, but the project remains on paper 21 years later."
"Paucity of parking space is a problem that plagues not only residential colonies that have been turned commercial, but even planned commercial complexes."
VC Tandon, president of Joint Federation of RWAs, said that the government and traders should stop passing the buck and join hands to find a solution.
"It is the responsibility of the civic agencies to create adequate parking space. However, shopkeepers are equally responsible because their customers will use the parking lot. Where valet parking is possible, the government can charge the shopkeepers some money for providing land nearby—there should be no burden on the customers. In other areas, the civic agencies should create multi-level parking lots," he said.
Confederation of All India Traders general secretary Praveen Khandelwal said that the government should implement the parking policy as soon as possible.
Email Vibha Sharma: email@example.com