Soon after the Chandigarh Municipal Corporation took possession of all 26 paid parking lots in the city Tuesday, BJP leader Kirron Kher inspected one in sector 35, after which she called up the civic commissioner to ask why rates for ‘smart parking’ were being charged when the facility was not being offered there. She also posted a video of her visit on social media.
Officials of the civic body’s engineering wing and medical officer of health (MOH) wing took possession at 8 am and charged flat rates of Rs 10 for two-wheelers and Rs 20 for four-wheelers, doing away with hourly charges.
Soon after, Kher arrived at a sector 35 parking lot in an Innova car. The video shows her asking the amount being charged for parking. Speaking to Chandigarh Newsline, she said, “When the firm whose contract has been terminated had claimed to provide smart parking, why were they charging Rs 20 when the facility was not being provided?”
Her post on Twitter said that a lot of people had been complaining to her about the same, after which she “raided the parking…and found it to be true.”
“Getting it fixed. Will ensure that the prices are dropped to INR 10 ASAP,” her post further said.
Kher then called up Municipal Commissioner KK Yadav to ask why Rs 10 (regular parking) was not being charged.
As it is the general house that decides revision of rates, the MP then called up Mayor Rajesh Kalia. Kalia said that they will take up the matter in the house.
On Monday, the civic body had canceled the contract of Mumbai-based firm M/s Arya Toll Infra Limited, which had been managing the paid parking lots of Chandigarh, after two cheques of Rs 1.5 crore paid by the firm to the civic body as dues, bounced. The MC has also decided to file a caveat in the high court.
‘Political gimmick ahead of polls’
Chandigarh Congress president Pardeep Chhabra said, “It is a political gimmick on her part. Her own BJP-led MC had approved the hiked parking rates even when there were no smart parking facilities and now because polls are around the corner, she claims to raid the parking lot and ask officials for reduced parking rates. The MP is just misleading the public.”