FIVE MONTHS after it imposed hefty penalties against illegal parking, BMC on Monday decreased the fines to be paid by motorists parking within 500 m of public parking lots. Following criticism from residents, the civic body has now revised the penalty to 40 times the legal parking charge levied by the public parking lot around which a vehicle is found parked. The same penalty will also be applicable to motorists who park around BEST bus depots.
Last July, to curb illegal parking and traffic congestion, BMC had introduced new parking rules, as per which, penalty ranging from Rs 5,000 to Rs 23,250 had to be paid if a motorist parked his vehicle within 500 m of a public parking lot. While four-wheelers and heavy vehicles were to be fined Rs 10,000 and Rs 15,000, respectively, the fine could go up to Rs 23,250 in case of heavy vehicles.
As per the new rule, while penalty for four-wheelers has come down to Rs 4,000, for two-wheelers, it will be Rs 1,800, Rs 7,000 for buses and Rs 10,000 for heavy vehicles. However, if vehicles are parked on the four arterial roads that have been designated as no-parking zones, four-wheelers will be fined Rs 8,000 and it can go up to Rs 19,800 for heavy vehicles.
An official from BMC’s roads and traffic department said, “Imposition of heavy fines had worked well and people have started parking vehicles in public parking lots. This has also decluttered the city roads. Following this, a decision was taken to reduce the penalties.”
The new rule has come as a relief to motorists. Sudhir Pendharkar, a resident of Worli, said, “The BMC should first give enough parking spaces to motorists. By imposing heavy fines, the problem will not be solved, as the gap between demand and supply should be met first. I am happy that they have finally decided to reduce the fines.”
However, some residents expressed fear that people would now again start parking vehicles on the road, resulting in congestion. “When the civic body had introduced the new fines, many key roads saw less traffic. This will again encourage people to park vehicles on the road,” Anmol Gupta, a resident of Parel, said.
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