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Daily harassment for Shimla city car owners, inadequate parking complexes barely helping




It is an apt example of incapability of present government, policy makers and high-rank administrative officials to manage administration efficiently.

SHIMLA- The capital city Shimla and its people who own cars are bearing consequences of the sins of Himachal Pradesh Government and district administration and are being mentally tortured by working of Shimla Police.

Shimla Traffic Police and Municipal Corporation of Shimla have jumped to a whole new level of absurdness regarding parking rules. Shimla Police is blindly slapping challans for parking vehicles anywhere other than the parking lots, but it forget to count that fact that the available parking complexes are not sufficient to accommodate all vehicles. There is still need of yellow lines and feasible roadside parking spaces. Residents of Sanjauli writes that the newly built parking complex at Sanjauli has a capacity of about 350 vehicles, but the number of private cars owned by residents is about 1,000.

Shimla Parking vows

The residents had urged the administration to continue yellow parking facility between Sanjauli and Gas Godown as the parking lot fell short of space to accommodate all vehicles.

A grieved resident of Sanjauli wrote to HW saying,

In Sanjauli administration and police have closed even one side parking to pass benefit to the newly constructed parking complex owner, and has left people helpless. Administration has put approximately over 700 vehicles out of these one side road parking, and newly constructed parking has the capacity of only 350+ vehicles (with rs 2850/- p.m). Now people who don’t find parking space in the parking lot are being challaned and vehicles are being towed to police cranes. Isn’t this failure of administration to provide adequate parking space on nominal rates questionable?

Similarly, administration is tapping its own back by building a small parking lot at Chotta-Shimla with space only for 250 vehicles. Soon after the Rs 24 crore Sanjuali and Rs 20 crore Chotta Shimla parking complexes were inaugurated, yellow lines were removed without considering the fact that the number of vehicles is way higher.

I barely find space for parking when I return from office. Due to fear of challan, I park my car about 3 kilometers away from main Sanjuali area, but I still got challane even when there is no sign board warning of no parking zone. Where am I supposed to find space when parking complex is already packed ,

said a resident of Sanjauli.

Another similar case of harassment by police was reported by a resident of Chotta-Shimla

In Chotta Shimla, Yellow lines have been removed even at places where parking can be allowed. Vehicles are blindly challaned by police to use the parking complex only,

he said.

The complaint from Sanjauli further added,

Recently, MC Shimla and some politician proposed to impose charges on yellow line. Now the question arise that people have paid road tax for 15 years than why should they bear charges for such road side parkings without any safety. We are living in Shimla which is a hilly city unlike Delhi or Chandigarh where vehicles have parking in front of the house. These cities have planned system. But in Shimla situation is totally different. We have limited roads, limited parking facilities, limited sources and its upto administration to provide parking facility. From encouraging people to car pool, the administration can one also adopt one-way concept, fly over concept, opening restricted/ sealed roads (only for residents) and by improving public transportation system and will definitely take off some burden from Simla roads.

He is not the only one who is feeling harassed and fooled by administration. We have received the same complaint from other residents too.

I am a resident of Chotta Shimla. I want to raise an issue of undue pressure being put on the residents in regard to parking near Strawberry Hill. Please help. We have been parking our cars there for donkey years. Now suddenly the police have started challan all the cars. There is no disturbance to the traffic at all because this road is not connected to any main artery. The people are forced to use newly built parking to benefit the parking owner. But the parking lot is not sufficient to serve all car owners in the area,

wrote another resident of Chotta Shimla.

These complexes including some other proposed complexes at Dhalli, IGMC Shimla, Tutikandi would be built and operate, own and transfer (BOOT) basis on Public Private partnership (PPP) mode.

Urban Development Minister Sudhir Sharma had promised the public that till all the parking got completed there would be parking markings along the roads. However, it appears the police department and Mr. Minister are working ignorantly without coordinating. This is an apt example of incapability of present government, policy makers and high-rank administrative officials to manage administration efficiently. Moreover, there is no need to mention that during the tenure of current SP, Mr. DW Negi, working of police has been highly questionable. So presently police harassment is real thing in Shimla.

Madan has studied English Literature and Journalism from HP University and lives in Shimla. He is an amateur photographer and has been writing on topics ranging from environmental, socio-economic, development programs, education, eco-tourism, eco-friendly lifestyle and to green technologies for over 7 years now. He has an inclination for all things green, wonderful and loves to live in solitude. When not writing, he can be seen wandering, trying to capture world around him in his DSLR lens.

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16-years-old girl dies of poverty despite widowed mother’s pleas to HP Govt for help



poor Solan girl dies of kidney failure

CM had reportedly assured that the girl would be provided with the needed relief. He had told the delegation of journalists that he had made contact with the PGI asking it to begin the treatment of Deepika.

Shimla: Almost every day, the Chief Minister of Himachal Pradesh, Jai Ram Thakur, appears in photos receiving checks worth lakhs of rupees and even crores as a donation to the CM Relief Fund. The SJVNL had donated Rs. 1 crore to the Fund in January 2018.

SJVN donation towards HP CM relief Fund

Unfortunately, the State Government allegedly failed to grant a trivial part of it for the timely treatment of a 16-years-old girl, who had met a complete kidney failure a couple of weeks ago. The girl died on early Saturday morning at the PGI, Chandigarh. 

The government, however, did not issue any official statement regarding the status of the release of the fund.  

Her widowed mother had spent a couple of lakhs she could arrange. The mother was left penniless by the time the girl was taken to the PGI, Chandigarh.

The mother, Sukhdai, a resident of Kashlog panchayat of Solan district, came ahead as the donor – the best she could do to save her daughter. Despite having a donor, the widowed mother found herself unable to arrange this gigantic amount required for the transplant.

The call for help first appear on social media and made rounds of Facebook and WhatsApp before reaching the Hindi dailies. A couple of social organizations and individuals did extend monetary support, which proved to be insufficient.

The Government was supposed to take cognizance of the media reports instead of waiting for someone to guide the mother. 

The mother had made several pleas to the people and government to save her daughter who was then about to die. A group of local journalists had also met the Chief Minister on March 18, 2018, to bring the matter pertaining to the life and death of the said girl to the attention of the CM.  

Himachal Watcher had also talked to the mother and had published a story regarding the Chief Minister’s intervention.  

The CM had reportedly assured that the girl would be provided with the needed relief. He had reportedly told the delegation of journalists that he had established contact with the PGI asking it to begin the treatment of Deepika immediately.

However, in reality, she did not receive any relief (at least not timely) and succumbed to her poverty this morning.  

Here is what the RTI activist Dev Ashish Bhattacharya alleged in a social media post:

As a heartbreaking ending, a poverty-stricken, widowed mother ended up watching her daughter die in front of her eyes while their misery mocked at both of them. The ‘Beti Bachao’ campaign of the State Government failed her.

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Shimla MC allegedly makes insensitive comments over mishap caused by its carelessness




Shimla MC JE

Shimla: The change of power in Himachal Pradesh, as well as in the local bodies, has now begun to manifest itself through the attitude of government staff. Keeping with the trend, the staff of Shimla Municipal Corporation House also seems to have emboldened.

An aggrieved citizen brought to our attention his bitter confrontation with one of SMC’s Junior Engineers, who showed complete indifference to a risk that his own carelessness posed for the public safety.  

On March 8, 2018, a lady had fractured her leg after she stepped on an uncovered ‘water valve box’ or road box of the SMC. right outside the gate of Auckland House School for Boys. She was returning home after attending a parent-teachers’ meeting.

Another man, a father of two kids who attend nursery classes at same school witnessed the accident and was one of the first to come to help the woman. The fractured leg had left her groaning in pain.

It would be a mistake to consider it a trivial and isolated incident as several other spots in Shimla town pose the same threat to the public. While several road boxes are uncovered, some others are placed in a haphazard manner.

As a matter of fact, despite being a public safety concern, none of the local journalists found it worth highlighting.  

Himachal Watcher, in its previous article, had also tagged the Mayor, Kusum Sadret, to apprise her of this safety issue. 

After the lady was taken to the Indira Gandhi Medical College for treatment, the father made a complaint to the SMC on its helpline number 1916.

He requested the SMC to take up the matter immediately and cover the said box to avert further mishaps, especially with the nursery kids. Moreover, similar mishaps have been reported due to this carelessness of the Corporation, he told the SMC.

However, the SMC still not fixed it properly, rather, did a ‘Jugaad’ job (as shown in the picture below). 

Photo 1.0

Shimla MC JE

The man clicked a fresh photo on March 14 and made another phone call to the SMC to file a verbal complain about the poor job done by its field staff. The official on the other end could not give a satisfactory answer to the queries of the father.

Therefore, the SMC office further diverted him to the concerned Junior Engineer, who looks after the area. The father approached the JE phonically and expressed concern over the safety of his own children as well as several others who use this road.

The father told the JE that the field staff did not take this safety concern seriously despite the said accident and covered the road box with a damaged lid, which was still posing threat to children and pedestrians. The gap in the lid was still large enough to trap foot of a nursery kid. (See photo  1.0)

When questioned about the issue, the JE said the SMC don’t have a proper arrangement to cover it. He said it will be replaced later. The man, however, told the JE that even the temporary arrangement was made with equally irresponsible manner.

He reminded the JE that this box must be covered on priority bases as it is a matter of safety of the public, especially the school kids. The JE tried to wash his hands of saying it will be fixed later but did not give any readdressal period. He asked the JE to define an approximate deadline for the replacement.   

The father apprised the JE of the mishap with the lady, who had fractured her leg.

The JE, however, allegedly made a very rude and insensitive comment in the following words,

To logon ko bhi jameen par dekh ke chalana chahiye (People should walk with their eyes on the ground).

The complainant again asked the JE to at least provide an approximate time that the SMC would take to fix the box.

The complainant asked the JE,

Who will take the responsibility if a kid gets injured meanwhile SMC delay replacement of the damaged cover?

To the dismay of agitated father, the JE once again repeated,

Admi ki bhi jimedari hai ki wo jameen par dekh kar chale (It is the responsibility of people to keep their eyes on the ground while walking).

The father was not only offended but also stunned at the insensitivity shown by the JE towards the safety of kids and public in general. 


In a way, he told me to apply same to nursery kids. Is it a sensible thing to do to leave the kids on their own and turn a blind eye towards his own error,

the father told HW. 

It’s the height of irresponsibility. Despite being the responsibility of JE, he showed indifferent towards the safety of children and ignored his duty he is paid for. To make things more ugly, he did not hesitate to make offensive comments and insult a citizen, who had approached him with a valid complaint. 

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Woman fractures leg after stepping onto Shimla MC’s trap of negligence



Shimla: The Carelessness on the part of Shimla Municipal Corporation today led to an accident in which a woman fractured her leg. The woman was taken to the Indira Gandhi Medical College where the fractured leg received a plaster cast.

It implies that the woman’s mobility will be restricted for at least one month, affecting her entire routine. In addition, she will have to bear the pain inflicted due to the negligence of the civic body and pay the bill for treatment.  

This little gift from the SMC to the lady on the Women’s Day resulted in both physical and mental harassment. The woman can actually sue the civic body and demand compensation for her injury if she wants. 

The woman, who was identified as Anjana Janartha, told Himachal Watcher that she had come to attend a parent-teacher meeting at the Auckland House School for Boys.

After the meeting, she had barely taken a few steps when she suddenly stumbled. A few meters away from the school-gate, an uncovered water valve of Shimla MC, which was located in the middle of the road, waited for her.

The woman fell a victim to it as her step landed in the uncovered cavity around the valve, and she stumbled. The other parents present on the spot helped the woman. However, the accident twisted her leg badly.

Some of the parents, who talked to HW, complained that the cover of the valve is missing for years now. The absence of a stop tap cover turned it into a dangerous trap.

It was not an isolated incident. Last year, a woman had stumbled after stepping onto the same trap, but fortunately did not receive major injuries.

The parents said there had been occasions when children either stumbled or had narrow escapes. The children upto primary level are more vulnerable to this trap of ignorance.   

There are innumerous underground water valves in Shimla, which are lying without any cover or closure.  It is a matter of safety of the public and no compromise should be made in this regard.  

The SMC needs to take stock of such spots and cover them properly to avert any future mishaps.    

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