Traffic police ready for paid parking

Given the task of managing the city’s mindboggling traffic situation, the new additional commissioner of police (traffic and security) B Dayanand might get some relief if the paid parking rule comes into effect during his tenure. Streamlined, strictly regulated parking should definitely be a big boost to better traffic management. The city’s traffic police topbrass would know the strength of that strategy, particularly in the Central Business District (CBD).

Dayanand draws attention to areas such as Jayanagar, Indiranagar, JP Nagar, and Avenue Road, where commercial activity gets hyper especially during weekends. “In these areas, the parking areas are generally taken over by unauthorised parking assistants, who claim to look after the vehicles at preferential rates. Due to this, everyone prefers to commute with their personal vehicle even if they have the option of using public transport,” notes the officer. But this trend, he adds, causes a lot of inconvenience to the residents, shop occupants and flow of traffic in such high density areas.

Traffic police officials had earlier sent proposals on paid parking norms. However, it was reportedly sidelined due to political and public pressures. But now, there is no choice. “The vehicular density on the roads has become so high that it is necessary to enforce parking regulation,” observes Dayanand.

Former Additional Commissioner of Police for traffic, M A Saleem suggests that the amount collected from issuing parking tickets could also be used to create proper parking infrastructure in the city. This is the need of the hour.

“The number of vehicles in the city is almost half the population itself. The amount generated will be in crores and it can be efficiently utilised in road development projects,” notes Saleem.

Once parking becomes a paid service, motorists can also expect security at designated parking lots. This, according to Saleem, would greatly reduce incidents of vandalism and theft of vehicles.

But with the enforcement of traffic fee, the city police officials have not discounted parking spillovers at residential areas or undesignated parking spots.

“It is likely that some individuals, to avoid paid parking, might get into unauthorised parking rackets at residential and private areas. But once the paid parking proposal is formalised, we will aggressively enforce it by towing and penalising such offenders,” warns Dayanand.

So, the traffic police is ready for the job. It is now up to the Bangalore Bruhut Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) to take the paid parking option to the next level, and give some hope of relief from the road congestions for Bangaloreans .

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