Mumbai: BMC plays good cop-bad cop with on-street parking plan

Updated: Aug 31, 2019, 11:23 IST | Arita Sarkar |

Among the first five areas chosen for the new on-street parking policy, BMC begins levying fines in four, spreads awareness in fifth

Bikes being clamped at MK Road on Friday
Bikes being clamped at MK Road on Friday

The civic body's new on-street parking rule came into effect on Friday with the BMC and traffic officials towing away vehicles from around five areas in the city after preliminary warnings. While vehicle owners in four of these areas had to shell out hefty fines, the Dadar area was an exception owing to the festive season that brings heavy crowds to the shopping hub that is Dadar. Officials from G North ward spent Friday spreading awareness about the no-parking areas and have decided to start fining from next week.

Authorities have put up boards across all five stretches to inform the public about areas where parking is no longer allowed. Since the rule came into effect on Friday, civic officials gave citizens a warning before clamping or towing their vehicles. In K West ward, for instance, civic officials said that many vehicles drove away after they saw a couple of cars being towed.

A car being towed in K West ward
A car being towed in K West ward

In D ward, the ward officials teamed up with former servicemen from a security agency who helped in dissuading people from parking on Maharshi Karve Road and guided them towards the public parking lots and pay-and-park slots. Vishwas Mote, assistant municipal commissioner of D ward said that they have hired five ex-servicemen from the Army and paramilitary forces to help the ward officials with towing as well as spreading awareness on M K Road.

In G North ward, the rule has been implemented in an area measuring 1.53 sq km around a stretch of Gokhale Road from Portuguese Church to Lady Jamshetjee junction near Shivaji Park. Around 1,200 parking slots will be made available in the area and while paid parking is available on a section of Gokhale Road and Senapati Bapat Marg, no parking is allowed on Veer Sawarkar Marg.

Board informing citizens of the new parking fines at D ward
Board informing citizens of the new parking fines at D ward

Also read: BMC may copy MMRC's idea to identify faulty bridges

With Ganesh Chaturthi two days away, civic officials have decided to give some leeway to residents. "The area is largely residential and we need to first spread awareness about the new rules. Our officials are visiting people parking on the roads and asking them to park in the Kohinoor parking lot or in the pay-and-park slots. We will start fining and towing vehicles from September 3 onwards," said Kiran Dighavkar, assistant municipal commissioner of G North ward.

During the parking planning process, the Mumbai Parking Authority (MPA) made provisions for on-street pay-and-park slots which will be maintained by contractors. These spaces have been marked with yellow paint on the roads. If this system works in the five areas, authorities might replicate it across the city.

Also read: Mumbai: Call BMC if Ganesh Chaturthi mandals flout rules

Five places chosen for new parking fines:

. Gokhale Road, Dadar
. A 3.5-km-long stretch of Maharshi Karve Road from Churchgate station to Opera House junction
. A 5.7-km-long stretch of S V Road in K West ward from Juhu Airport to Oshiwara River
. New Link Road in Oshiwara
. LBS Road in Mulund

How to pay?

For the pay-and-park slots, the BMC has appointed contractors who will be stationed around the spots to charge vehicle-owners for parking.

For parking elsewhere in no-parking areas, a fine will be added to your vehicle's RTO history. The defaulter can either go online and pay on the Vahan website/app (vahan.nic.in), or pay the total dues when caught next.

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