By Citizen Journalist Rajeev Kakkar
If you are from the newer part of Jammu city, you probably dread going to the Residency Road area, Raghunath Bazaar, City Chowk, Kanak Mandi, Rajinder Bazaar or most such locations. Most times you just wouldn’t get parking in any of the aforementioned areas and then you drive all the way to residency road to look for a spot. Either that or you drive a whole circle back.
I was at Residency road twice recently and I had a nasty experience both the times. The first time I went in my four-wheeler and I had barely stopped my engine when the parking guy came asking for Rs. 20 without a ticket.
I told the fellow that I’d pay later but the guy just didnt agree. Understanding that the guy would not care about the vehicle at all if I gave away the money, I told him again that I would give it later but by now he started saying, “Nikaal lo gaadi bhaiya.”
I was like what? I was forced into paying money but took it with a slip. The first hour parking charges are Rs 10 on the ticket and I protested but by now more guys had come in the big brother bullying-counselling way and said, “When you come back, we will see if it has been less than one hour.”
I obviously returned furious in less than an hour but these guys were not around and I lost the 10 bucks.
The same episode repeated when I parked a two-wheeler. The upfront money asked was more than the first hour charges and the same old story.
Jammu Municipality has made the side space on Residency road into a parking for the convenience of the public. But the guys who operate on the contract or ‘Theka’ are bloody goons. You try taking a stand against them and they would come down to threatening you.
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I would hope the new JMC commissioner is as good as the previous one and take action against such behaviour and get the parking mess cleared in these areas.