The acute shortage of parking space in major Indian metros such as Delhi, Mumbai, and Bengaluru has led to various governmental and judicial bodies exploring ways and means to address the problem. An estimated 3,500-4,000 cars are registered in Noida and nearly double the number in Bengaluru and Mumbai each month.
A concerned central government, in coordination with several stakeholders, is proposing a novel solution wherein prospective car buyers would have to produce evidence of a dedicated parking space in their residential complex before being allowed to purchase a vehicle. Moreover, there is also a proposed move to ask existing car owners to produce such an affidavit when they approach authorities for the fitness certificates of their cars.
How does a secure parking space work?
The proposal is envisaged to solve (at least to some extent) the congestion problem by dissuading car owners from parking on the sidewalks and roads due to the unavailability of parking space. In addition, the measure would be implemented by insisting on the production of an affidavit from the car owners before they can register their car. This policy, which is already being implemented in Noida post a court verdict, is part of the Motor Vehicles Amendment Bill that is pending before parliament as of July 2018.
Taking a cue from this, other municipal administrations in cities such as Bengaluru and Mumbai are exploring the feasibility of this solution in their respective cities. In the prime areas of South Mumbai, the administration has proposed giving limited but paid monthly passes to the local citizens wanting to park on the street side during night time.
Due to high growth in automobile sales, we are soon reaching the breaking point as far as congestion is concerned but the way things are moving, we might be staring at a deadlock on our roads if solutions are not urgently implemented. This also serves as motivation for formulating the policy of securing parking space.
Will the solution work in reality?
While the policy is no doubt well-intentioned, the fact remains that in India, there is a yawning gap between policy formulation and implementation. Some urban experts are of the view that the proposal might sound ideal in theory but is impractical in reality. This is so because the authority that issues the registration certificates (Road Transport Department) is different from the ones that validate the evidence (Metropolitan Corporations and Traffic Police). Thus, implementation will rest on large-scale coordination.
In addition, the burgeoning number of cars registered each month in major metros calls for an increase in the number of government officials to handle the nuts and bolts of implementation. However, once codified into law, this policy can be enforced using digital technologies like the Get My Parking Enforcement App integrated with city-wide smart parking platforms. Citizens can also easily register for securing monthly passes through a Citizen Parking App.