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Bathinda traders irked by 'arbitrary' towing of vehicles

‘Business hit as customers not visiting shops’

Bathinda traders  irked by 'arbitrary' towing of vehicles

A view of parking contractor employees towing a car parked in yellow line in city market area in Bathinda on Friday.



Tribune News Service

Sukhmeet Bhasin

Bathinda, August 6

Bathinda’s multi-storey parking project has snowballed into a major controversy, with irked shopkeepers alleging that visitors are being harassed by the parking contractor as even vehicles parked within the yellow line are being “arbitrarily” towed away. The contractor is then allegedly charging a fine of Rs 500 from the vehicle owners.

Traders said their businesses have been badly hit by the situation, as customers are avoiding coming to the area.

Within purview of contract

It is within the purview of the contract of the contractor to tow away any vehicle wrongly parked in the market. The demarcated yellow line is for two-wheelers, so if a four-wheeler is parked there, it will be towed away because it occupies the space meant for two-wheelers. —Sandeep Gupta, MC official

Bathinda Beopar Mandal general secretary Parmod Jain said: “We support the project but its poor implementation has created problems for all. It has badly hit our livelihoods and is being opposed by many organisations now.”

Jain added that the traders’ body would hold a protest on August 8.

Sonu Maheshwari, the president of NGO Naujawan Welfare Society, said more than 50 cars are being towed away from the market areas of the city daily. He dubbed this “direct loot” by the contractor and said it must be stopped.

AAP leader and Punjab Cricket Association chief Amarjit Mehta said the DC should intervene in the matter and provide relief to residents. He also called upon Bathinda Mayor to convene a meeting on the issue and find a solution.

Bathinda SSP Gulneet Khurana said: “The Traffic police is separately issuing challans to violators, while the MC is doing the task of towing wrongly parked vehicles.”

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