No freebies: Government vehicles will have to pay fees for parking, says Civic chief

Municipal Commissioner says only a few top officers have been exempted from paying fees; company has given only 150 passes for free parking

COMING DOWN heavily on government officers and employees for not paying parking fees, the commissioner of Chandigarh Municipal Corporation, Baldeo Purushartha, on Monday specified that government vehicles will have to pay fees. He said they would be writing to all heads of departments, asking them to pay parking fees. “Government vehicles are not exempted. We will write to all the departments that these are paid parking lots where they park the vehicles and a fee has to be paid for it like every other person does,” said the commissioner, adding that only a few top officers have been given passes, exempting them from paying fees for parking.
The company has given only 150 passes for officers of the UT Administration, councillors, mayor and former mayors for free parking.
However, a survey revealed that around 13,000 government officers, their employees, from UT, Punjab and Haryana, who refuse to pay parking fees for both government and private vehicles.
An official from the Medical Officer of Health (MOH) wing at Sector 17, on condition of anonymity, told Chandigarh Newsline, “In fact, because of official work, we need to frequent the offices of our higher-ups, sometimes at Sector 9 also and for that we need to take out our vehicle. So, how many times should we pay parking fees. Moreover, it has been around a year and we never paid parking charges.”
“If somebody from the staff of a high-level officer comes in his private vehicle, too, he starts arguing with our women attendants,” said Sandeep Bhora, project coordinator of the company.
A senior IAS officer of the Chandigarh Administration said, “Ethically, everyone should pay. If for official work, the staff or even the officer’s vehicle has to move in and out of the parking lot, they must get monthly passes made. Freebie culture shouldn’t be encouraged.”
The company in a survey found that of the 13,000 vehicles, 7,500 are those bearing Haryana and Punjab numbers at Sectors 17, 8 and 9.
Around 3,000 employees of the MOH wing, including sanitation officials and safai karamcharis, Chhuttani Medical Centre parking and remaining from the Haryana tourism office, labour department, engineering wing and various other departments of the Chandigarh Administration did not pay any fees, causing a daily revenue loss of Rs 65,000.


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