Chandigarh, May 29, 2010; It is widely known that “Adding lanes to solve traffic congestion is like loosening your belt to solve obesity.” In Chandigarh one finds that to make space for ever increasing number of vehicles, widening of the roads is rampantly undertaken and resultantly Administration is granting permission for cutting of not dead or worn-out trees but even for healthy, green, shady and also fruit bearing trees. Full grown green trees are axed plus trees get exposed at the time of digging and are covered in concrete when the roads are widened.
Today, taking a note of cutting of green trees, unmanageable number of vehicles (as already there are more than 9 lakh vehicles in a city of 11 lakh people-highest density of vehicles in India) and resultant increasing pollution in the city (A study conducted by Chandigarh Pollution Control Committee in 2009 has already depicted that Benzene levels are alarmingly high and the major source of this is due to crankcase emissions, evaporative losses and exhaust emissions) volunteers of Yuvsatta through their counsel Reeta Kohli filed a PIL before the division bench of Chief Justice Mukul Mudgal & Justice Jasbir Singh and notices were issued for July 27, 2010, to respondents namely Advisor, Chandigarh Administration, Commissioner, Municipal Corporation, Chandigarh, Inspector General of Police and SSP (Traffic), Chandigarh Police.
The petitioner Yuvsatta has been constantly working on various environmental issues including promoting usage of bi-cycles instead of motorized vehicles.
In the PIL the petitioners alleged that while vehicles are lined up along the roads, even green parks have been converted into parking areas. The parking space within the compounds of the houses is not adequate in most cases, especially when one family owns more than one car it becomes a matter of daily quarrel between neighbours.
Yuvsatta volunteers raised many important points for consideration of the court today;
That in view of the above stated the petitioners pray as under:-
* for directing the Administration to develop paid parking Zones and Multi-level parking space.
* For directing the Administration to ensure sufficient private parking space or the payment of annual paid parking charges before the registration of four wheelers.
* for directing the Administration to start imposing surcharge at the following rates.
o On the purchase of 2nd Car @ 20% of the price of the car.
o On the purchase of 3rd Car @ 30% of the price of the car.
o On the purchase of 4th Car @ 40% of the price of the car etc.
* for directing the Administration to develop unused parking spaces of the market to be used at paid parking zones at night for the nearby residents.
* for directing the Administration to upgrade and upkeep the bicycle tracks in the entire city.
* For directing the Administration to promote cycling in the City by holding various promotional and competitive events.
* For directing the Administration not to allow the residents to park their vehicles outside the boundaries of their residences at night but in the nearby paid parking zones.
* For directing the respondent administration to augment and strengthen public transport system and also to introduce Mass Rapid Transport System (MRTS ) at the earliest in a time bound manner.
* For directing the Administration to allow odd & even registration number of cars on roads on different days and for declaring weekly off- Vehicle Free Zone (Sector wise).
* for issuance of any other writ/order or direction which this Hon’ble Court deems proper in the facts and circumstance of the case.