Cities like Pune, which are IT hub is filled with middle class, who are employed either in IT, BPO or some other service sector. This city is also home for many innovative entrepreneurs and business people. In current era, many of these people like to spend their time specially in Weekend and sometimes in weekdays shopping in prominent malls like Pheonex, Kumar Pacific Mall, Seasons and Amanora for shopping.
Also these malls hold multiplexes like PVR, Inox and Cinemax and attract huge crowd of movie lovers in the city. The parking lot of most of these prominent malls are fully packed with vehicles particularly on weekend and occasionally on weekdays as well.
Some of these malls like Pheonex charges rates like INR80 over the weekend for a 4 wheeler parking and INR40 on regular days. Many people even park their vehicles over the side of the roads due to these parking charges resulting in clogging or 1 or 2 lanes. This results in a traffic jam in already crowded pune resulting into pain and harassment of common man.
Pune based RTI Activist Prafful Sarda filed an Online RTI with Pune Municipal Corporation to check if Parking on these malls and provision of Drinking Water should be charged or these malls should give these facilities free to citizens using the mall.
The reply from PMC is a shocker, which clearly states the parking charges charged by these malls is not as per the law and these malls should provide free parking for people comming to these malls.
So where is the huge amount collected as illegal parking charges by these malls go? Is it not some kind of scam where money is extorted illegally from common people?
And even after knowing the truth, why is Pune Police and Pune Municipal Corporation letting this happen resulting of extortion of money and suffering to common people?
Here are the copies of RTI and the same news covered by Lokmat Daily
As this RTI confirms that collection of Parking fee is illegal in malls in Pune, so there could be well a case that in other cities as well, this case could be applicable. Well, we can confirm this only if someone like Prafful files a similar RTI.