The practice of installing illegal hoardings alongside various roads in the city goes on unabated. It not only costs exchequer dear but also distracts commuters. Besides, advertisements can also be seen on trucks and trolleys parked on the roadsides.
Thousands of vehicles pass through city roads everyday. The authorities concerned have failed to take necessary steps to solve the problem of illegal hoardings.
Several commercial and religious hoardings among others have been installed at different locations in the city. Many hoardings are installed at unwanted places, which can cause mishaps.
The areas where these illegal advertisement hoardings are installed are Maharaj Nagar, Sarabha Nagar, Pakhowal road, Ferozepur road, Gill road, Haibowal road, Rajguru Nagar and Bhai Randhir Singh Nagar among others.
It seems the people, who have installed illegal hoardings, give a damn to the norms as there is a provision of penalty for such violations.
The state government had increased the fine for violating Section 123 (prohibition of advertisement without permission) of the Punjab Municipal Corporation Act around six months ago. However, the civic body is yet to take concrete action against the errants.
The municipal corporation (MC) can generate a huge revenue by issuing challans to the violators.
Moreover, many billboards are also installed on the national highway, violating the Punjab and Haryana high court orders. In 1998, the Punjab and Haryana high court had issued directions to remove the billboards alongside the national highways as these were considered dangerous and an impediment to the safe movement of traffic.
According to sources, these illegal hoardings have not been removed due to the political pressure.
Several illegal hoardings have been installed in the city as the authorities concerned have failed to take action. The billboards on the roads distract commuters which can lead to even fatal accidents. Necessary action should be taken against the errants.
The municipal corporation is not following the orders of Punjab and Haryana high court on billboards. The illegal hoardings installed on the roads are the major distractors, responsible for causing road mishaps. Civic body is responsible for all these violations.
Kamaljit Soi, international road safety expert
I will direct the officials concerned to remove all the illegal advertising hoarding in the city.
MC additional commissioner Rishipal Singh