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Punekars struggle to find parking space at RTO

Thousands struggle to find parking space for their vehicles at the RTO every day, as ongoing road repairs and seized vehicles eat up most of the space

While the Pune Regional Transport Office has been making consistent efforts to make its registration and documentation processes simpler for citizens, it has overlooked one factor that is putting off thousands of visitors to the office – the acute shortage of parking. Over 5,000 people visit the office every day, and about 85 per cent of them bring their own vehicles.

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No room: Nearly 50 seized automobiles hog all the slots in the parking lot. Pics/Dattatraya Adhalge

Ongoing roadwork being conducted by the Public Works Department in and around the RTO has already blocked their access to the parking lot. Those who do manage to make their way in to the compound have a nasty surprise waiting for them. The entire parking lot is chock-a-block with over 50 vehicles that have been seized by the transport authority, including trucks, buses, auto rickshaws and all manners of automobiles.

Chetan Hegde, a working professional who recently visited the office, said, “It took me more than 15 minutes to find a spot where I could park my car as the entire place was packed with buses and trucks. The little space that was available for parking was littered with road construction material.”

Another visitor, IT professional Sandeep Singh, said, “When I went to the RTO, I was shocked to see the condition of the area: big rocks were lying on the road, and there was no provision to park vehicles. My friend had to wait in the car while I finished my work, as there was no parking. It was a horrifying experience.”

According to norms, the RTO is supposed to hold seized vehicles for 45 days, during which it issues three notices to the owners to claim them. If there is no response in the 45 days, the RTO is supposed to put the vehicles on sale in auctions that take place every month. However, the vehicles at the parking lot have been there for six months.

Deputy Regional Transport Officer Anil Valiv said that it would be a temporary inconvenience for visitors. “PWD has sanctioned R20 lakh for painting the building and constructing the road inside the premises, and the work will be completed by next month. We have issued notices to the bus owners to pay the fines and take their vehicles. If there is no response by the middle of next month, we will send them for auction,” he said.

He added, “We are making provisions to construct and repair the road inside the premises so that citizens can get more space to park their vehicles. Due to lack of funds, the PWD has only been able to construct the road near the learners’ driving license section so far. Post-monsoon, the entire project will be completed.”

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