Brace yourself for a hike in parking charges. On Wednesday, during its budget presentation, commissioner of the North Delhi Municipal Corporation PK Gupta proposed to hike the existing parking slabs of Rs. 10-20 to Rs. 20-75. The east and south corporations are likely to follow suit when their budgets are presented on Thursday and Friday, respectively.
According to the plan, car owners will have to pay Rs. 20 for parking a car for one hour, Rs. 50 for two to six hours and Rs. 75 for seven to 12 hours. During peak hours of 5pm to 9pm, the charges will go up by 50 per cent. Right now, car parking rates are a flat Rs. 10 for 10 hours.
According to officials, areas such as Jama Masjid and Aruna Asaf Ali Marg, which already have higher parking rates, will be developed to accommodate more cars.
The BJP leadership of the civic body, however, hinted that the revised rates may be rejected when the proposals come to the standing committee for approval.
Unveiling a Rs. 3,500-crore budget for the next fiscal year 2013-2014, the commissioner said it was imperative to hike the fee to discourage car use. "To deal with the increasing number of cars that are causing shortage of parking facilities, an IT-based comprehensive parking policy is the need of the hour. The civic agency has prepared a draft for the same," he said.
The commissioner also announced that parking space for another 1,978 cars will be created in 2013-14. In 2014-15, 2,000 more cars will be accommodated in parkings, making areas such as Karol Bagh, Kirti Nagar and Chandni Chowk more accessible. In total, the corporation will have 115 parking sites by next year.
A major chunk of the budget — Rs. 101 crore — will be spent on pensions, Rs. 628 crore on education and R597 crore on sanitation. The agency will also spend Rs. 487 crore and Rs. 499 crore on health-related services and public works, lighting, respectively.