Vijay Gopal, a resident of Hyderabad, filed an FIR against Inorbit mall after he was told to pay Rs 30 for using the parking lot for just 10 minutes.
He filed an FIR against the mall at the Madhapur police station on August 26.
“The malls are minting money. Anybody who visits the mall would at least spend two hours for a movie or shopping and for that you have to shell out minimum Rs 50, no matter which mall,” says Mr Gopal. What annoyed Mr Gopal even more was the addition of GST on the parking slip. He says this practice is actually against many rules and government orders. A judgment from the High Court of Hyderabad dated May 2, 2003, declared the parking fee to be illegal.
As per law, a commercial area should have more Floor Area Ratio against the total built up area, which means that 44% percent of the area has to be a common area, for which government has provided waivers and concessions. Therefore, the builders cannot turn these common areas into commercial areas and earn money out of it.
The case against Inorbit mall has been booked under sections 188, 418, and 420 of the IPC, which is for disobedience of an order and cheating with knowledge. Mr. Gopal also said that many players benefit from this parking charge – the mall constructors, the management of the mall, and the contractors who manage the parking lots. The issue is governed by state laws and so in Hyderabad it is illegal. But some other states have regulations that have capped the fee to a maximum of Rs 5.
Gowri Shankar, a lawyer and chairperson of the Confederation of All Telangana Consumer Organisations (CATCO) said that “Every building is mandated to have a parking space based on the built up area. So it goes without saying that they must let it for free as they are inviting people to visit the place to make a purchase. It is their responsibility and courtesy to provide free parking.”
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