Amritsar, December 15
Devotees and tourists, who visit the city to pay obeisance at the Golden Temple, will have to pay Rs 100 for parking their vehicles for a few minutes around the Golden Temple. A number of parking lots have come up in the walled city and the roads leading to the Golden Temple.
Inadequate space in the public parking lots has made the parking owners to exploit the situation. Some people have started turning empty spaces into parking lots and levying hefty fees from vehicles owners. Those residents who have a vacant plot, have started accommodating the vehicles of visitors, searching for parking space, by charging parking fee from them.
Owners of private parking lots are not only fleecing but also harassing devotees and tourists in the absence of any check of the authorities concerned.
They charge as per their sweet will. Most of such parking lot owners or contractors charge a fixed price of Rs 100 for 12 hours. Visitors have to pay Rs 100 even if he parks the vehicle for one hour. They often misbehave with visitors after an argument on overcharging and time.
“The negligence on the part of authorities boosts this business which encourages the loot of devotees. A major portion of Saragarhi parking is reserved for local traders, who park their vehicles in it. On weekends, the Saragarhi parking got full. Visitors have no option than parking their vehicles in these private parking. Owners of the private parking owners demand hefty parking fee. Ironically, there is no check of the district administration and the MC,”said Advocate Kuljit Singh, a social activist.
Dahrminderjit Singh, Estate Officer of the Municipal Corporation, said, “The MC operates only 14 parking lots in the city. A number of private parking exists in the city. We can’t fix any rate as they have their own space. The MC can collect commercial tax from such parking lot owners. The property tax wing should collect the commercial tax from such parking.”
The contractor of a parking lot in a ground of Gurdwara Baba Naudh Singh claimed that they pay all the taxes to the MC. The residents demand that the authorities should fix some rate for the parking as per the duration of parking.