MC takes over AC Market parking lot, fresh tenders to be floated

  • Vikas Gupta, Hindustan Times, Patiala
  • Updated: Oct 19, 2015 22:00 IST
MC officials taken over the parking lot in AC market, Patiala, after HT highlighted blatant overcharging by the hospital’s paid contractor. (Bharat Bhushan/HT Photo)

The Rajindra Hospital management has decided not to extend the contract of the paid parking contractor and would float fresh tenders with strict regulations to provide relief to residents from overcharging.

The decision was taken at a meeting of the hospital management with the director of medical education, the supervising authority of the hospital, on Friday.

HT had on October 8 highlighted the blatant overcharging by the hospital’s paid parking contractor for past three years. In past one week, local volunteers of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) staged protests twice on the hospital premises against the contractor for charging Rs 20 for four-wheelers against `3 and `10 against `2 for two-wheelers.

Hospital medical superintendent BL Bhardwaj said fresh tenders would be floated with strict norms. He said the penalty for overcharging had been increased from Rs 500 to Rs 5,000 for each violation. “The contract will be cancelled if the contractor violates the norms for the fourth time. These strict regulations would be a deterrent to overcharging,” he added.

The current paid parking contract will expire on November 17.

Fresh tenders after 3 years

The hospital authorities are inviting fresh tenders for the paid parking lot after three years. Since 2012, the hospital has been renewing the contract even after receiving numerous complaints of overcharging against the contractor. Bhardwaj said new tender would be floated within a week.

‘Better supervision required’

AAP’s local convener Balbir Singh said actual parking rates should be displayed at the entry of the parking lot. He also demanded that the present contractor should not be allowed to participate in the new allotment process. The hospital should identify separate parking lots for four-wheelers and two-wheelers to avoid chaos, he said. “We need better supervision and regulation at the hospital parking lot to check overcharging,” he added.

MC takes over AC Market parking lot

In a relief to city residents, the municipal corporation has taken over its lone paid parking lot behind the AC Market.

The MC did not extend the contract, which expired on October 17, after HT highlighted that the contractor was overcharging. The MC decided to manage the parking lot on its own till it does not find an eligible contractor, the process of which will begin soon.

For a change, the residents were charged Rs 10 for four-wheeler against Rs 30 charged earlier by the contractor on Monday. Two-wheelers were charged Rs 5 instead of Rs 10.

The MC, it is learnt, is planning to amend its paid parking norms by adding a clause of heavy penalty along with cancellation of the contract. A penalty clause of Rs 10,000 for each violation would be added in the new contract along with tougher rules for cancellation, said mayor Amarinder Singh.

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