Taxi drivers seek alternative parking lot on Link Road

Private and commercial taxi drivers have refused to cooperate with the decision of the city Traffic Police to ban parking on Railway Station Link Road in the city.

According to the Taxi Operators Association and merchants in the area, the total ban on parking would not be practical unless the City Corporation provided a separate parking lot for taxis.

Though new traffic signs have been put up on the road, drivers of commercial and luxury vehicles are finding it difficult to abide by the rule in the absence of alternative parking lots. Many a time, the vehicles are parked just beneath the signboards, ignoring the police regulation. The parking area provided by commercial firms near Link Road is also inadequate during peak hours.

“The City Corporation should have considered establishing alternative parking facilities while tightening the parking rules with the support of the Traffic Police,” says N. Prakashan, secretary of the Motor and Engineering Mazdoor Sangh. “We are not against enforcing a strict ban on parking here, but it should be done after making alternative arrangements, he said.

According to leaders of the Taxi drivers union, as many as 4,000 autorickshaws run regular services in the city. For them, Link Road is one of the busy routes where they drop people going to the railway station. K. Shaiju, a driver, says he is compelled to ignore the parking ban as there are no other options during peak traffic.

The Tax Payers Association, with the support of the people, has decided to approach the Ombudsman highlighting the anomalies in the new parking restrictions. According to the association, the Corporation authorities are responsible for the disorder.

“Earlier, there was separate parking space for 50 cars, but with the recent renovation of Link Road, the area was closed,” said P.T.S.Unni, secretary of the association. He added that the association would mobilise public support to resist the “unjust ban on parking” in the area.