Just a day after the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) and the Mumbai Traffic Police announced new fines for wrong/illegal parking, a total of 80 vehicles were towed in Mumbai with about Rs. 1.80 lakhs in fines from violators. According to a report by the Times of India, these 80 vehicles include 63 cars, 14 two-wheelers, and 3 auto-rickshaws. To let you know, the maximum fine for a parking offence in the city is now Rs. 23,000 in case of heavy vehicles, Rs. 15,100 for light motor vehicles, Rs. 12,200 for three-wheelers and Rs. 8,300 for two-wheelers. Sunday was the first day of action against parking violators after the new rule was implemented a day before.
A majority of the 80 vehicles seized by the civic officials are still in BMC’s possession as these owners have not yet paid the fine. For countering this condition, the rule also contains a provision that if the fine is not paid soon enough, late fee, as per the new penalty rates, will be applicable on their fine amount. The late fee applicable on four-wheelers is Rs. 170 per day while late fee on bikes is Rs. 110. To let you know, the BMC had listed 26 public parking lots (PPL) in the city and marked out no-parking zones within a 500m radius of them. Anyone found parking in these no-parking zones is to be fined heavily which is the same that has happened now. The image below shows the fine receipt issued to the owner of a vehicle that was towed away after it was found in violation of the new rule.
Among the vehicles that were busted, the highest fine was issued to a Kalina resident who runs a tourist car agency. He had to pay a total of Rs. 40,000 to get four of his seized vehicles released. Around 10 cars were parked out of his residence and while BMC staffers managed to tow four of them, the rest 6 were driven to safety by his staff. According to the officials involved in the activity, the effect of this new rule has already started to show up as more vehicles were seen in designated parking areas this Sunday as compared to other Sundays. A total of nine vehicles have to pay Rs. 10,000 fine which makes for half of the Rs. 1.80 lakh total fine collected.
The whole operation is being performed quite professionally, which is evident by the fact that the officials were equipped with cameras and recorded every vehicle as it was being towed to avoid false harassment complaint later. BMC has even tied up with ex-servicemen and professional security guards to implement these fines major resistance from violators are expected initially. However, the first day didn’t show up with any such resistance as it was Sunday but the officials are expecting more action in the following weekdays.
The decision to levy such huge charges for wrong parking has been taken to promote the use of specified parking spaces which in turn will result in decongestion on roads. It focuses on vehicles parked illegally within 500m of PPLs so that people park the cars in the parking out of the fear of such huge fines if nothing else. The civic body has put up banners with a ‘no parking sign’ along with Rs. 10,000 fine warning. Barricades with ‘No Parking’ sign have also been put up at several spots.