Paying for what?

Uncomfortable Stay

With Bangalore becoming a hub of educational and work opportunities, paying guest (PG) accommodations have been flourishing in the City for some time now.

Big business : Many paying guest accommodations in the City are running without licence.

These are also turning into a big business for the house owners as the income generated is large.

PG accommodation can be found in every nook and corner of Bangalore but there is no authority to keep a check on them as many are run without licence.

The number of tenants per PG accommodation is at least 20, sometimes even going up to 30.  It consists more of working people, especially women. And yet such places lack strict regulation.

According to the Karnataka Municipal Corporation Act 1976, running a PG accommodation requires the house owner to obtain a Health Trade Licence by paying a sum of Rs 3,000. Failing to do so can lead to the closure of the place.

Also, water and electricity are supposed to be supplied at commercial rates and while paying those taxes, the house owner has to show it as a non-residential property.

However, in the City, not only are many of the PG accommodations being run without licence but the tenants are also given tall promises in the beginning about the amenities and food.

Tenants face many issues in a PG accommodation. For instance, sometimes the rent is increased after just a few months of stay. Sometimes, the food served is bad.
And many a time, one even has to share a single room with as many as six tenants, that too for a high rent.

For Archana Jha, a pharmacist who stays in a PG in Koramangala, leaving her hometown Delhi was a big step initially. 

“As I belong to North India, I was unaware of South Indian food, which is provided at my PG accommodation. I did not like it and thought South Indian food is not good.

But then some of my South Indian roommates also started complaining that the food served is bad. I realised that South Indian food is not bad but the way it is cooked in our PG accommodation is bad,” she says. 

“Sometimes we are given stale food for lunch,” she adds. Mounica Rai, who hails from Andhra Pradesh, stays in a PG accommodation in Vasanthnagar. “The food given is of the worst quality.

Despite that, our owner charges a lot of money,” she says. The income generated by running PG accommodations sometime touches up to Rs one lakh. And as these places don’t have any licence issued, the owners easily save on taxes.

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