Civic body seems to be sleeping, while traffic cops have turned a blind eye towards the bizarre act being practiced at a busy stretch on Wardha road – the road from Lokmat Square to Panchseel Square, much to the distress of the citizens who keep looking aimlessly for space to park their four-wheelers. The contractor who has been assigned space for pay and park on both the sides of this road, work on his own whims, letting out the stretch meant for parking four wheelers to private commercial entities. Interestingly, the space given to a newly spruced up ENT hospital was pegged at just Rs 1500 per month. The hospital has illegally encroached upon the space for their own private parking by placing mobile barricades around the space.
The cops and municipal officials preferred to pass the buck and made safe exit by saying that the matter would be looked into. However, the blatant violation can be seen by one and all, while commuting through the patch from Phoenix Infra office, Kolwadkar Clinic and so on.
These owners have reportedly deployed rude guards who misbehave with the people who drive their vehicle in front of their establishments. Moreover, some of them have insolently put a rope with a no parking signage demarcating the public parking space as their own.
Many owners and road users have raised queries as to how can anyone block the parking space. “Has the civic and RTO authorities given exclusive rights to these owners of business establishments to park their own vehicles in front of their offices or clinics? If every owner blocks parking space for his own 5-6 cars by paying a meager payment of Rs 1500, where is the public supposed to park their vehicles?”, asked a citizen who looked frustrated as he kept maneuvering for the want of parking space.
It could be mentioned here that the road is a pay and park road and any one would presume that they can park their vehicle on the road by paying due charges.
Nagpur Today spoke to the DCP Traffic DCP Ashok S Tangde (IPS) in this regard who said he would have to look into the matter and opined that technically no one can block space on road. However, he said, “I don’t want to make any statement based on hearsay. I can take action only when I speak to proper authorities about this.”
When Nagpur Today contacted PI Traffic Ajay Sankeshwari, he however came up with contradictory statement, He said the entire right side of the road (under the flyover) from Lokmat Square to Panchsheel Square has been given by NMC on contract for parking. The entire left side of the road is given on contract for 4-wheeler parking. “The hospitals and business establishments who have blocked the space could have entered into some agreement with the contractor. The police department cannot do anything since NMC has given the tender to a private contractor”, he said.
The contractor Razzak who has bagged work for 4 wheeler parking on left side claimed that Kolwadkar clinic authority has taken two passes and charges for parking for the third car is paid on monthly basis. He opined that he had to do this since many a time he did not get space to park his own car near his hospital.
Not only have this hospital, all the business complexes on this stretch acquired the space in front of their offices in a similar way, leaving the people in the lurch.
When Nagpur Today spoke to Commissioner of Police K K Pathak about this issue, he said since he was in Mumbai on his official visit, he could not comment on anything. However, he agreed that the DCP traffic should intervene and stop such practice immediately.
NMC Commissioner Shyam Wardhane too came up with non-satisfactory reply. He said that he would have to speak with the concerned official and after that only can he comment, if this practice is right or wrong.
Vice President of Shiv Sena Karan Tuli said that this is illegal practice. He alleged the parking contract has been given to few criminal elements that run the business on their own whims and fancies. “They form their own decisions and do not adhere to the rules and regulations. NMC is prompt to harass poor and needy people over smallest mistake. He warned if NMC does not take up the issue, they will raise the issue on war front.