Public hearing held over parking lots near Meenakshi temple

Sources from the city corporation said such public hearings help in learning about the concerns of the public.
Meenakshiamman Temple in Madurai
Meenakshiamman Temple in Madurai (File photo| Special Arrangement)

MADURAI: A special public hearing was called after a proposal for parking on the roads around the Meenakshi temple, maintained by a private company, was received with opposition from traders and the public. Lack of parking spaces has been one of the major reasons for frequent traffic jams across the city.

Many measures are being taken up by the police and the city corporation, but to no avail. The area where the parking lot was proposed — Veli Street, Masi Street and Aavani Moola Street — struggles with frequent traffic jams. While vehicle movement is restricted in the Chithirai veedhis, roads around the temple lack parking spaces.

Though the corporation has constructed two multi-level parking facilities — near the temple and the Periyar Bus Stand (yet to be opened to public) — the issue remains. The corporation had come up with the solution of allowing parking at designated spots and charging a fee through a private concern. Since the announcement of the proposal, it has been faced with backlash from the trade union in the area.

Lenin, a member of the Centre for Indian Trade Union (CITU), said, "As the locality has many shops, and a private entity charges the employees of these shops for parking, a portion of their salary would be compromised. The corporation should take the initiative to hire people or arrange for local shop employees to manage the parking facility."

Furthermore, he added that many are unaware of the initiative, about how the fee would be collected, or what relaxation will be given to the traders in the area, which is the reason for the objections.

Sources from the city corporation said such public hearings help in learning about the concerns of the public. The meeting was chaired by corporation officials and council members. Residents and trade union representatives also participated.

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