Petitioner Sajeev Ezhava, filed public interest litigation before Hon’ble Gujarat High Court contending that the parking fee collected by malls and commercial establishments is illegal and against the basis of exempting them from municipal taxes. Further, the petition said that the exorbitant parking fee leads to accidents as the visitors tend to park the vehicles outside the commercial establishments.
Advocate Vishal J Dave and Nipun Singhvi pleaded that the action of collecting parking fee by the malls and commercial establishments is illegal as the RTI made by the petitioner reveals that there is no law with regard to collection of parking fee. It was the case of petitioner that the approved building plan is not included in the FSI and also the same is exempted from levy of municipal tax. It is as per the provisions of the Comprehensive General Development Control Regulations, 2017 (CGDCR), it is compulsory for the owners of the commercial/shopping complex and malls to provide regular parking facility for the owners as well as visitors to the complex. The owners/builders availed the benefit of extra FAR by including the area meant for parking and, therefore, it is not open to them to utilise the said parking area as commercial venture and collect fee from the visitors.
Citing similar policy of the Government of Telangana has issued Government Orders dated 20.03.18 whereby Policy of Parking for the city of Hyderabad and other urban areas of Telangana to regulate the parking charges as the huge parking fee is being collected in the commercial establishments such as malls and multiplexes etc. to avoid misuse of parking.
Petitioner had previously also filed PIL in 2016 with regard to air connectivity at Surat Airport. Petitioner is social activist and has been working for the social cause in the city of Surat. Further, the petitioner is resident of Surat City and approached the Municipal Commissioner to clarify regarding legal position , to which he answered in affirmative.
Gujarat High Court issued notice to State Government and Surat Municipal Commissioner.
Next date is fixed 25.07.2018.