BMC parking policy capped fine at Rs 800

Parking policy approved in 2015 states that the penalty can only be four times the charges for a day’s parking in PPLs

While the BMC officials are yet to decide the revised parking fines after widespread opposition to its Rs 10,000 penalty, the BMC parking policy approved in 2015 states that the fine amount can only be four times a day’s parking charges in a Public Parking Lot (PPL). This means that the BMC can charge only Rs 800 from those parking their cars in noparking zones within 500 metres of PPLs.

The parking policy approved by the civic general body in 2015 reads, “Within 500 metres of the PPLs, a fine which is four times of a day’s charges in the PPLs will be recovered. In this way, maximum number of people will use the space available at PPLs and traffic congestion on roads will be reduced.”

A civic official said that at first the proposed fines were to be just 1.5 times the rates in the PPLs. But since the rates in the PPLs were low, it was decided to make it four times the daily rates. “So, for instance, in Category A areas, where the daily charges are Rs 200, the fine for parking within 500 metres of PPLs can’t be more than Rs 800,” the official said.

Mumbai Mirror had last week reported that BMC was set to revise the Rs10,000 parking fine. According to BMC officials, the exact formula is being worked out but that the new fine could be as low as Rs 1,000.

Municipal Commissioner Praveen Pardeshi had said that the fines would be reduced in places where traffic congestion has reduced.

The BMC is likely to issue a new circular reducing the parking fines. “The Mumbai Parking Authority (MPA) had suggested that we can charge a maximum fine which is four or five times the total charge for parking a vehicle at a street parking lot. The BMC charges Rs 200 for parking for the whole day, so five times of that amount is Rs 1,000. So the new fine is likely to be Rs 1,000,” the official said.

The BMC’s move came after a rap from MPA Chairman Gautam Chatterjee. The MPA had ruled that the BMC’s Rs 10,000 parking fine on select roads in the city was arbitrary and can’t be imposed. Chatterjee had told Municipal Commissioner Praveen Pardeshi that such a hefty fine of Rs 10,000 and in some cases of Rs 23,000 can’t be imposed and has recommended that the fine be capped at a reasonable amount.

Batting for a higher penalty, a senior civic official said that a Rs 1,000 fine would not be a deterrent for motorists. “The Rs 10,000 fine has had a great impact and has reduced congestion on arterial roads. The impact is visible and the roads are clear now. If the fine is reduced from Rs 10,000 to Rs 1,000 then people will get back to parking cars in no parking zones and the streets will be clogged. No one will use the PPLs. The fine amount should be high enough to deter people from parking in no parking zones,” the official said.

The BMC had on July 7 begun imposing hefty fines for parking on roads within 500 metres of a public parking lot. The fines ranged from Rs 5,000 for two wheelers to Rs 10,000 for cars. The BMC had collected over Rs 66 lakhs in fines in a month after it implemented the new fine of Rs 10,000 for vehicles parked in no parking zones within 500 meters of Public Parking Lots (PPLs). In the 30 days since the scheme was launched, the BMC fined 1,029 vehicles, collecting around Rs 2.22 lakh a day on average.

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