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Esplanade Controversy: Here's Orissa High Court Order On Parking Fees

30 December 2019


Bhubaneswar: Amidst outrage over the collection of parking fees at city-based Esplanade One mall despite a ban by Bhubaneswar Development Authority (BDA), here is the order of the Orissa High Court on the power of which the mall authorities claim to have resumed the collection.

"As an interim measure, it is directed that, no coercive action shall be taken against the petitioners, till the next date," read order by the Orissa High Court issued on December 17, 2019, where the petitioner was Safari Retreats Private Limited, the company which has constructed Esplanade One.

Earlier on December 13, 2019, Safari Retreats Private Limited had filed a petition at the Orissa High Court challenging the ban imposed by the BDA.

The application was filed under Article 226 of the Constitution of India, 1950 and it mentioned the direction issued by the BDA to stop charging parking fees from the visitors in the off-street parking area inside the mall of the petitioners as illegal, unreasonable and arbitrary.

While the petitioner Safari Retreats Private Limited was represented through its Additional Director Mohit Arora, the respondents or opposite parties are,

1.) State Of Odisha

2.) Bhubaneswar Development Authority (BDA)

3.) Planning Member, BDA

4.) Zonal Deputy Commissioner (SE) Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC)

Orissa HC judge Justice CR Dash heard the petition on December 17, 2019, and ordered to issue notice to the opposite parties 2 and 4 by Registered Post with AD Requisites filed by Friday (20.12.2019) and list the matter after Service Return from the opposite parties 2 and 4.

However, BMC Commissioner and BDA Vice-Chairman Prem Chandra Chaudhary said they have requested a copy of the order to examine it. If there is any such order they will fight the case in the Orissa HC. 

"Government is giving permission for different parking spaces for different categories. That parking space is not chargeable. They have challenged our order, we will fight and we are sure our order will stand if it is as per rules," added Chaudhary.

Twin City Police Commissioner Sudhanshu Sarangi denied giving any comments on the issue stating parking fees collection falls under the jurisdiction of the Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC).

Prem Chandra Chaudhary, Vice-Chairman, BDA

Dr Sudhanshu Sarangi, Commissioner of Police