‘Parking Only for S.I.B Customers! But Does the South Indian Bank Own Public Property?
Mangaluru: Few months before Mangaluru Smart City Limited (MSCL) took up the road widening work opposite to District Wenlock Hospital, and near Milagres School/College, Falnir Road in the City there was a bus shelter- and during the road widening work the bus shelter was demolished, and now that the road work has been completed, MSCL has not reconstructed a bus shelter in that spot, thereby making the commuters to wait for their buses in rain and shine. And this has been the routine of MSCL everywhere they undertake road widening work, they remove the bus shelters and never rebuild them again.
Prior to South Indian Bank there used to be a medical shop that closed due to lack of business, and after the bank started operating they have placed a few ‘PARKING ONLY FOR S.I.B. CUSTOMERS’ signs, which is illegal as per Mangaluru City Corporation rules. While Mangaluru City is already facing an acute shortage of parking spots, added to that, private business owners, including this Bank, are making use of some of the MCC owned property as their Parking spaces. Many of these buildings applied for licences even though they had mentioned about providing parking places, but are running their businesses without space for parking in the building. If you look around the City, you will see ‘No Parking’ signs erected in front of the private firms- forget about private businesses, even a ‘No Parking’ sign is posted in front of a Neta’s office.
But do these people know that they don’t own the parking space-they only own or rent their business space- the parking place that they claim to be theirs, legally belongs to MCC. Period! Many commercial complexes in the City which operate without parking are the main reason for traffic congestion during busy hours. Vehicles parked on footpaths or roadsides, and for that matter, parked in front of these businesses who had posted ‘No parking’ signs for their benefit are creating lots of hassles for the motorists and also leading to traffic snarls.
Many of these buildings allow a limited number of vehicles, especially meant for their clients, while other commercial buildings don’t even have proper parking space. Even though every private/commercial building has to provide enough space for vehicle parking, unfortunately, the owners of these buildings violate the rules after obtaining the licence, some even use political influence, as per MCC officials. So what corrupt society are we living in?
In conclusion, a message to all these business owners, it is illegal for you to put a “no parking” sign out by the road, in a misguided attempt to prohibit parking. Such signs can be placed alongside the road only by the authority of the MCC or Traffic police. Essentially all other signs, placed near the road, or indeed anywhere in the public right of way, are illegal and may be removed by the concerned authorities without notice. But sadly that is not happening in Mangaluru. MCC and City traffic police have turned a blind eye to these issues, and commercial/ business owners are taking advantage of this. But they should realize that the road is public, and open to all, with some exceptions. You could probably put a sign in your driveway, saying “No Parking” and be within your rights- but not on a public property that belongs to MCC/Citizens.
It is a public street, and you do not have the exclusive right to parking privilege. A no parking sign on the street in front of your business, unless it is your property, is ignorant. You do not own the street or have the exclusive right to park there nor do your exclusive customers. Are Mangaluru City Corporation authorities who are evicting footpath vendors and encroachments by people blind to this rot of usurpation? Why is the traffic police who are always around this place turning a blind eye to this? Why do Citizens of Mangaluru who are on Falnir road near Milagres College and need a parking place and do not find one, never question?