Today, traffic jams have become a daily routine in the capital town. It is observed that during Assemble Sessions, no traffic jams occur due to strict enforcement of traffic regulations. If such strict enforcement is always applied, perhaps there may not be any traffic jam. Some multi-parking buildings are coming up in the capital town and apparently, more are in the pipeline. However, no matter how many more of these multi-parking buildings come up, they can neither fully meet the requirement of the people nor solve the present menace of traffic congestion.
Streamlining of traffic congestion in the State in general and the Capital town in particular appears to be late but the saying goes, ‘Better late than never’. In order to curb traffic congestion and generate revenue from parking rent/fees, a few suggestions are put forward:
It should be made mandatory for vehicle owners to set up a private garage. For the implementation of such a mandate, a grace period may be given. Grace period: A minimum of three months grace period may be given to vehicle owners to enable them to arrange a private garage. Subsequently, the following options may be considered:
- On expiry of the grace period, any person who hasn’t conformed to the directive may be given another 15 days along with a fine of Rs. 1000/- per night.
- After expiry of 15 days, the vehicle may be towed away to public ground etc. with a rental charge of Rs. 2000/-, Rs.3000/- and Rs.5000/- per day against light, medium and heavy vehicles respectively.
- The vehicle may be returned to the owner after payment of towing charge and defaulting charge of Rs.5000/- & Rs.10000/-, Rs.10000/- & Rs.20000/- and Rs.20000/- & Rs.30000/- in r/o light, medium and heavy vehicles respectively.
- If the owner cannot claim the vehicle within 5 days as stated in Slno. 3 above, the vehicle/s may be disposed of through public auction. This auction exercise may be completed within 5 days.
- On expiry of 3 months grace period, any vehicle without a garage may be allowed to park on the road with rental parking fee @ Rs.1000/-, Rs.2000/- and Rs.5000/- per night for light, medium and heavy vehicle respectively.
- Visitor/s in their own conveyance may be permitted for a maximum of 5 days by paying Rs.1000/-, 2000/- and 5000/- per day or night as part of parking fee in r/o light, medium and heavy vehicles respectively
Use of government multi-parking building
In view of the huge money invested for construction of the multi-parking building, it is imperative that it must be used judiciously for generation of revenue for the Govt. Parking/rental fee is proposed as:
- Day parking fee: a) Upto half an hour – Rs.10/-, b) Upto 1 hour – Rs.50/-, c) Beyond 1 hour and till 5 PM – Rs.100/-. if day vehicle parks beyond 5 PM, an additional charge of Rs.200/- i.e. Rs.100/- + Rs.200/- = Rs.300/- may be collected.
- Night time parking rent for vehicle owners without a garage (Light vehicle only): Rs.200/- per night from 5:30 PM to 7:00 AM in the morning for one month.
- Vehicle owners without a garage intending to rent beyond one month may be given upto another 3 months with Rs.500/- rental charge per night.
- Beyond 3 months, rental charge may be raised to Rs.1000/- per night. For new registration: A certificate from the concerned Panchayat that there is provision/compound to park the proposed new vehicle/registration. The concerned Panchayat shall be held responsible for any false certificate with a fine of Rs.10000/-
- In case of Option 2, the Panchayat may be entrusted to implement the mandate during the initial period of 6 months and the rental charges so collected may be shared 50:50. In order to maintain transparency and accountability, a daily report with a photograph of vehicles parked on the road may be sent to the Govt. After 6 months, the Govt. may take over the whole responsibility and any negligence of duty on the part of the official in charge may be directly reported to the Head of Dept. by the Panchayat as a part of strict and successful implementation.
- A garage is not a road, so also a road is not a garage. If for a certain reason, the road is to be utilized for those without a garage even after the grace period, the Option 2 given above must be implemented for a specific time period only. If the vehicle owner/s is/are able to afford paying the rental fee, there will be a generation of Govt. revenue. However, it is certain that there will be a number of vehicle owners who would find the high rental fee to be beyond their economical maintenance and would voluntarily opt out of keeping a private vehicle, thereby, traffic congestion will automatically be eased. In order to solve heavy traffic congestion, it is high time to take drastic measures and stringent action sooner rather than later.
- The odd-even system is also required to be in operation permanently so that there will be less vehicle movement and air pollution level.