Pune: Around three months ago, the Pune railway authority had reduced the ‘Premium Parking’ charge from Rs 20 to Rs 10 at the Pune railway station parking lot, but contractors are still charging the same price from two-wheeler owners.
The issue came to light on Friday, when some passengers noticed that the contractor was charging more than the actual rate.
Md Nesharul (34), an IT professional, told Sakal Times, “I paid Rs 20 earlier for parking at the railway station as I was not aware of the charges and the receipt states Rs 20. A few days back, I accidentally noticed the rate board, which is kept at a height and hidden under tree branches. As I had parked the bike for about one hour, the staff there asked for Rs 20, as he was collecting the same amount from others. When I protested, he accepted Rs 10.”
Sumit Singh (27), a marketing executive, said, “I have always paid Rs 20 thinking this was the charge as it’s printed on the receipt. It’s loot under the nose of the administration as most people park their two-wheelers for less than two hours, but they are being charged Rs 20 instead of Rs 10.”
Harsha Shah of Railway Pravasi Group claimed that there is a nexus between the contractor and the railway administration. “The contractor cannot charge more than the actual price. The rates have been revised, but very few people are aware of it. The contractor is still issuing printed receipts, which have Rs 20 as minimum charge. The railway administration should make it compulsory for the contractor to issue electronically generated tickets, which will help in curbing fleecing of passengers,” said Shah.
Railway officials unaware
† The railway administration is unaware of the ‘cheating’ by the contractor. A senior railway official said that they don’t know about it and if passengers complain, they will take action.
† “The contractor cannot force anyone to pay more than the new charge. We have not received any complaints from passengers,” said a highly placed commercial officer of Pune rail division.
† Visitors have alleged that the parking contractor also ‘extorted’ Rs 20 from those who reach the station just to pick up or drop someone without even using the parking areas.