Parking Fee at Pragati Maidan…

…has been increased to Rs. 100 from Rs. 10 overnight!

How much is the car parking fee at Pragati Maidan metro station? Rs. 100 for six hours. It was Rs. 10 for 24 hours until yesterday! I was astonished when learned about 10-fold hike this evening. I wasn’t insane to pay the amount to park a car for less than two hours. Therefore I came back cancelling my trip to Chawri Bazaar. I’ll go tomorrow in auto.

Pragati Maidan in New Delhi is a venue for exhibitions and fares of all kinds. The annual trade fair, perhaps the biggest of them all, has begun from today and on account of that they have increased the parking fee.

Arre bhaiya, bus fare have been increased, even the Metro rail has hiked its fare, so what if the parking fee has gone up?” said the attendant. He could clearly see that I wasn’t convinced. Why I find it very difficult to accept such a hike is because I think this is against the basic intention of having such an expensive transit system like the Metro rail. The idea, I assume, is discourage cars from entering into the city center so that congestion on the roads could be reduced. Drivers park their car at the station and take the train to reach their destinations. Now, with parking fee for six hours Rs. 100, who will park their car there and take metro? But then Delhi is a rich city! The parking lot was almost full when I was there this evening. Perhaps the business visitors at the trade fair, I guessed.

I have rarely traveled in bus in Delhi. Even the bus fares have gone up recently. It’s a steep hike and the opposition BJP has been protesting. There was Delhi bandha yesterday with partial effect, according to reports. The prices of many other essential commodities have also gone up in Delhi and other parts of India. [Same is the story in Nepal too though in this post I am talking about things in Delhi.] Today morning I was buying tomatoes and paid Rs. 15 for three medium sized. May be I hadn’t observed so minutely about the prices but I felt that was too much!

Perhaps not very much compared to the increment in the parking fee! The good thing is this hike is temporary. The attendant assured me that normalcy would be restored at the parking lot after the trade fair is over in Pragati Maidan.