Parking Issue - I: Lack of parking spaces for visitors leads to traffic jams in Amritsar : The Tribune India

Parking Issue - I: Lack of parking spaces for visitors leads to traffic jams in Amritsar

Parking Issue - I: Lack of parking spaces for visitors leads to traffic jams in Amritsar

Vehicles parked illegally at Heritage street in Amritsar on Tuesday. Photo: Vishal Kumar

Tribune News Service

Charanjit Singh Teja

Amritsar, January 31

Inadequate parking space for vehicles is one of the major reasons for long traffic jams in the city. The holy city witnesses more than one lakh visitors from across the state and country every day. A large number of rural masses from Punjab and Haryana visit the city on tractor trolleys, carts and trucks. Apart from devotees at the Golden Temple, a number of traders from other cities and neighboring states visit the city. As compared to footfall of tourists and visitors, the parking space is inadequate in the city.

The Amritsar Municipal Corporation operates 12 parking lots in the city. Only five parking lots, including Bhandri Bridge, DC office, Amandeep Hospital, Kairon Market and Machhi Mandi, are now functional under the supervision of the MC. The civic body has provided no parking lot around the Golden Temple. One of the major parking lots is

Saragarhi Parking being operated by Amritsar Development Authority (ADA). The Saragarhi parking accommodates around 800 four-wheelers. A large number of traders and residents from Katra Jai Mal Singh, Shastri Market, Katra Sher Singh, Bagh Akalian, Cheel Mandi and Ghe Mandi park their vehicles at the Saragarhi parking lot. Devotees and visitors often face inconvenience while trying to find parking space around the Golden Temple. On weekends, visitors have to struggle for hours to find parking space.

The civic body and the state government failed to provide a dedicated parking space to devotees and tourists at the Golden Temple. The non-availability of parking space led to traffic jams in the city.

Trucks and tractor trolleys are being built at Gurdwara Buraj Akali Phoola Singh. Apart from this, there are several illegal private parking lots, where self-style contractors or parking lot owners overcharge for parking and other misbehave with visitors.

The Shiromani Gurudwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) provides for the two-wheeler parking around Golden Temple. A dedicated parking on the back side of Akal Takht is reserved for VIPs and the clergy.

“The number of visitors to the Golden Temple is increasing day by day. It is one of the most visited places in the country. But the government and the civic body failed to make proper arrangements for the visitors. There should be a separate parking lot for large vehicles where tractor trolleys and trucks can be parked. The SGPC should provide their transportation from that parking lot to the Golden Temple. The car parking should be built on the outer ring road of the old city. Entry of four-wheeler should be restricted in the inner markets to address traffic jams,” said Sandeep Singh, a local activist.

Dharminderjeet Singh, Estate Officer, MC, said, “We are operating our parking lots in the city. Work on the multilevel automated parking at Kairon Market will start soon.”

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