Exclusive

Parking row - Back to Square One

IFP Editorial: The business lobby do not seem to understand that shops thrive when shoppers buy their goods and more importance should be given to shoppers. It is their bounden duty to provide more elbow space and easy accessibility for the general public who come shopping.

ByIFP Bureau

Updated 4 May 2022, 8:03 pm

(Photo: IFP)
(Photo: IFP)

 

Once again, idle parking in Paona Keithel and Thangal Keithel are back with several vehicles lining the roadside in front of the shops. Recently, the state government had issued an order that residents and shop owners for both the stretches of Paona and Thangal bazars should park their vehicles at western side of Johnstone Higher Secondary School and on public parking space of Naga Nullah respectively.

Police including traffic personnel were seen clearing the roads on the express orders of the chief minister himself. With that shoppers had a field day with more elbow room on the roads. Earlier, they had to negotiate with the traffic flow and double or sometimes triple parking in the market area in an effort to buy things and they had a difficult time. Besides banning idle parking, shoppers were given a parking time of five minutes to facilitate easy shopping.

Advertisement

Reactions in the social media from the general public was overwhelming and there was lot of praise for the government in this regard. Yet, we questioned as to how long the shoppers comfort is going to continue. The bazar lobby is indeed powerful and even sometimes it can hold a government to ransom. In the previous term also, Chief Minister N Biren Singh had urged the residents, shop owners, shopkeepers to refrain from parking their vehicles on the roadside.

ALSO READ: Ineffective government order causing more inconvenience for pedestrians in Imphal market areas

The general idea was of decongesting the traffic in the core market area, and the periphery roads. But, the appeal fell on deaf ears and it was back as usual after a few days. Now again, idle parking is back and what is the government going to do about it.

The shopkeepers had protested the new parking norms by downing shutters for a few days, but opened again after talks with the government. The business lobby and their cohorts only think about easy and quick access to their vehicles on the roadside and they are not concerned about traffic flow and the comfort of shoppers. They do not seem to understand that shops thrive when shoppers buy their goods and more importance should be given to shoppers. It is their bounden duty to provide more elbow space and easy accessibility for the general public who come shopping.

Advertisement

Now that we have anew and energetic MAHUD minister in the person of former Speaker Y Khemchand Singh, the general public has high hopes. The other day, Minister Khemchand was seen sweeping the road in the market and leading the charge of keeping Imphal clean. We hope, his efforts in cleaning the capital city of Imphal is not just restricted to sweeping the streets. Symbolic gestures are indeed necessary, but one must get down to the brass-tacks.

The municipal administration needs to be re-structured to meet new challenges, the core Bazar area needs to be managed well in every aspect and the bazar lobby needs to be engaged more forcefully. We had been flagging the issue of declaring the entire Bazar area as a commercial zone. We honestly feel that business and commercial activities should be allowed in these two areas of Thangal Bazar and Paona Bazar, and the present residents should move elsewhere probably in an enclave for the business community provided by the state. If we remember correctly, the state cabinet had earlier decided to move godowns from the core area to the periphery areas. Same could be done in the case of Bazar residents, in line with the concept of a Smart City.

The business lobby was certainly against the cases of pedestrian-only streets and declaring of the core area as a commercial zone. In most cities across the country and around the world, it has been made mandatory for every commercial establishment to create their own parking spaces. Again, non-motorised transport could be introduced, including cycling tracks besides the pedestrian-only movement, in the core area.

Editorial

Advertisement

First published:4 May 2022, 6:49 pm

Tags:

parkinggovernmentshopkeeperscivic amenitiesmunicipality

IFP Bureau

IFP Bureau

IMPHAL, Manipur

Advertisement

Top Stories

Loading data...
Advertisement

IFP Exclusive

Loading data...
Advertisement

Feedback

Have a complaint, a suggestion or just some feedback about our content? Please write to onlineifp@gmail.com and we’ll do our best to address it.