No space for buses, over 700 seized vehicles dumped in PMPML depots
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For the last four years, five PMPML bus depots have been accommodating 700 autorickshaws and taxis that were seized by the traffic police and RTO authorities for illegal plying in the city. Despite repeated complaints and requests by the PMPML authorities, the traffic department has failed to shift the vehicles, let alone paying any charges to the cash-strapped transport body for using the prime land. The vehicles are occupying considerable space at these depots, forcing the PMPML to park its own buses outside the premises.
In October 2008, the traffic police conducted a drive against illegal vehicles plying in the city area and seized hundreds of vehicles. As the traffic department does not have enough space at its disposal, it parked the seized autorickshaws and taxis in PMPML depots and has been doing so. The RTO has also been leaving the abandoned impounded vehicles at the depots.
While the traffic police had assured the PMPML of using the space only temporarily, they have not shifted the vehicles in the last four years.
"The PMPML is already short of space and we need whatever space we have. Impounded vehicles are using up considerable space and it has become a serious issue for us. We have repeatedly written to traffic department officials and the RTO authorities and have held several meetings with them. Despite repeated promises to shift the vehicles, they haven't done it so far," said Deepak Pardeshi, spokesperson, PMPML.
According to PMPML authorities, about 350 to 400 vehicles are lying at the Nigdi depot, about 200 vehicles have been parked at Hadapsar, nearly 50 at Swargate, and over 25 autorickshaws at the Katraj and Kothrud depots.
"The situation at Nigdi and Hadapsar depots is most serious. Recently, we deployed a crane to piled them up one above the other so that less space is consumed," said an official posted at the Nigdi depot.