Van drivers protest hike in multilevel parking charges

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Representational Image File/ GK

Srinagar: Scores of van drivers staged protest against hike multilevel car parking charges at Lal Chowk here.

The protesters assembled at Press Colony on Wednesday under the banner of Srinagar Van association to highlight their issue.

The aggrieved operators, who operate these vans to ferry students, said that authorities are asking them to pay Rs 2000 per month against the previous charges of Rs 1200 per month. They said that they don’t earn much and cannot afford exorbitant charges.

“Our vehicles are parked hardy for five hours daily and authorities are asking us to pay exorbitant rates. For past several years we were paying just around Rs 1000 per month for parking in Srinagar. Later we stated to pay Rs 1200 per month which was still affordable. Now we are asked to pay Rs 2000 per month which we cannot afford. We appeal authorities to look into the issue,” said Abdul Rashid, a Van operator.

The aggrieved said that their monthly income is already menial and they want respite from exorbitant rates.

“Our whole earning will go into paying for parking if authorities continue to hike charges like this. We have to feed our family and a lot of money goes into maintenance of our vehicles too. We cannot afford these exorbitant rates and appeal authorities to address our grievance,” said another protestor.

The aggrieved said that amid inflation, they are already suffering and if the hike of the parking charges continue, they will have to look for other option for livelihood. The protesting van operators appealed the concerned officials to look into the issue.

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