Saragarhi’s multi-storey car park is in decline due to lack of facilities.

Tribune News Service

Charanjit Singh Teja

Amritsar, June 10

The authorities concerned have left the Saragarhi parking lot near the Golden Temple neglected for a long time, with local activists pointing out shortcomings in the only multi-storey car park in the city centre.

The car park is located just 300 metres away from the Golden Temple and tourists can park their car near the shrine and stroll along Heritage Street.

An elevated road was constructed from the bus stand to the parking area on the estimated cost of constructing the road.

In 2006-07, Rs 24 crore was pumped to provide hassle-free parking spaces. The government spent Rs 250 crore on constructing parking lots. Social workers raised concerns about poor maintenance of parking lots, infrastructure problems, management, hygiene and safety.

Pawan Sharma, a social worker, said, “There is no sanitation facility, drinking water, lights and elevators remain out of order. There is no fire safety measure in place and no CCTV cameras in the parking lot. There is a shortage of parking space in the city. This is the only multi-storey car park in the city with space to park hundreds of cars. After paying high parking charges, visitors are deprived of basic amenities and are worried about their safety. The toilets stink and no one is able to use these facilities.”

Unsanitary conditions and pothole-ridden flyovers also irritate visitors, who often complain about the people working here but the authorities turn a deaf ear.

“It is the responsibility of the administration to provide parking space to pilgrims at a nominal fee. The parking lot and the flyover have been constructed with central government funds. The state government has no right to charge Rs 100 for parking. Even if it charges that amount, the parking lot must have all facilities,” Sharma said.

“Ironically, the elevator in the five-storey building remains out of order. The administration should install lights and CCTV cameras, ensure cleanliness in the washrooms, re-carpet the flyover, provide drinking water, maintain hygiene and deploy security guards at the parking lots,” Sharma said.

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