A week after HT highlighted the fleecing by the contractor at the municipal corporation’s lone parking lot at the rear of the AC market, the civic body has taken action and will not be extending his agreement after it expires on October 17.
The contractor, Ludhiana based M/s LRY Labours has sublet it to a local agency. Residents were being charged Rs 30 for a car per entry, three times the contractual rate of Rs 10 and two-wheelers were being charged doubled the mandated amount for two-wheelers.
Sources said the proposal to extend the contract, under consideration for some time, had been turned down after public outcry against the contractor, especially after the HT report.
Last week, deputy commissioner Varun Roojam has also intervened in the matter and directed the MC to take adequate steps to address the issue.
“The MC will take over the parking lot on October 18 and run it on its own with stipulated parking rates till the time it does not find an eligible contractor,” said mayor Amarinder Singh Bajaj, adding that the overcharging could not be justified.
“In the new contract that we will ultimately reward, there will be enough safeguards to ensure that people are not fleeced in the name of paid parking,” he added.
Major change in policy likely
The MC, it is learnt, will amend its paid parking policy by adding a clause of heavy penalty along with cancellation.
“A penalty clause of Rs 10,000 for each violation would be added in the new contract along with rules on the cancellation,” the mayor added.
The amendment in these rules are likely to be tabled before the next Finance and Contract Committee (F&CC) meeting, following which an e-tender process will be floated to select the new contractor.
Till the time, the MC will run the parking lot with a parking ticket of Rs 10 for a car and Rs 5 for two-wheeler.
Residents seek better implementation
Residents, however, are not satisfied with the move and demand better implementation of the plans.
Right to Information (RTI) activist DC Gupta says that the MC should focus on better implementation of the law.
“Even in the present contract, there was a provision of Rs 1,000 fine and the cancellation of contract in case of repeated complaints of overcharging. However, the MC did not take punitive action even after several complaints by residents and allowed the contractor to complete its term,” said Gupta, adding that the contractor would overcharge if the MC did not implement the rules.
* The MC will take over the parking lot on October 18 and run it on its own with stipulated parking rates till the time it does not find an eligible contractor.
Amarinder Singh Bajaj, mayor
* Even in the present contract, there was a provision of Rs 1,000 fine and cancellation clause in case of repeated complaints of overcharging. However, the MC did not take punitive action even after several complaints by residents.
DC Gupta, RTI activist