Increase parking charges: commissioners

While the mayors of the three municipal corporations have always spoken against levying new taxes in the city, the three commissioners are in favour of  increasing parking charges in Delhi. The commissioners also demanded that instead of loans, the government should give grants, as civic services meant for common citizens.

'We have to increase our revenue so increasing parking charges, which was put on hold in the MCD would also be an option. I will try my best to convince the deliberate wing to understand our concerns,' said Manish Gupta, commissioner of South Delhi Municipal Corporation. This argument was also reiterated by commissioners of East and North municipal corporations.

'We are in crisis of funds, so we will try everything to increase our revenue,' said S S Yadav, commissioner of East Delhi municipal corporation. Commissioners Manish Gupta (South), P K Gupta (North), and S S Yadav (East) said that the proposal for hike would be brought before the deliberative wings of the municipal bodies in the next one or two months. The percentage hike is yet to be decided. The move to impose parking charges by K S Mehra, Commissioner of the undivided MCD, was aborted earlier this year as the political wing of the body was strongly against the proposal due to elections.

Meanwhile, East Delhi Municipal Corporation is also starting a drive to catch tax evaders. 'There are many, residential as well as commercial, who evade property tax. We aim to catch them. Starting from 19 May, we would start the drive on ward level,' added Yadav.

According to Yadav, the auditorium of Udyog Bhavan, East Corporation's headquarters, would be made available for public functions so that it can earn some extra revenue. The three commissioners also reiterated that they would conduct drive to bring house owners of unauthorised colonies under tax net.

'I have written to government to provide East Delhi more grant as the corporation is financially the weakest among the three corporations,' added Yadav. Manish Gupta also pointed out that as civic services are meant for general public, the government should give grants not loans. On availability of parking space in Delhi, Gupta demanded the Delhi Development Authority (DDA) to allot land to corporations for parking. 'We are going to suggest the DDA to allot land to municipal corporations for parking wherever it is necessary.'

The three commissioners also in favour of conversion charges, and congestion charges to promote public transport and reduce usage of cars.
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