Post PDA bus attack: City administration clueless about parking spaces, bus terminals

Published: March 25, 2016
District nazim’s office could not offer comprehensive data requested under RTI law. PHOTO: RIAZ AHMAD

District nazim’s office could not offer comprehensive data requested under RTI law. PHOTO: RIAZ AHMAD

PESHAWAR: The city district administration appears to have no records of parking spaces, bus terminals and their contracts in the city and failed to respond to an application seeking these details.

Officials privy to the development told The Express Tribune the district nazim’s office and its four towns failed to provide comprehensive data in this regard. The information was sought through an application submitted under the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Right to Information Act 2013.

According to a copy of the application available with The Express Tribune the district administration was asked provide details of all bus terminals, bus stops and car parking slots. The RTI application also sought information about the duration of contracts, tax rates and facilities provided by contractors at bus terminals and car parks.

Naeem Khan Khalil, the applicant, submitted the application on February 11, 2016. However, the respondents did not give the information in time. As a result, Khalil filed a complaint with the RTI Commission against the district nazim’s office after which the relevant departments were served show-cause notices by the commission.

Lack of information

The RTI Commission held the case proceeding on March 15 which was attended by representatives from four towns. It was then revealed the administration was confused about who will identify said parking spaces. There was also confusion about who would take action against illegal parking spaces, bus or taxi stands.

In addition, the administration also failed to give complete information sought under the application. The commission summoned all the relevant departments dealing with the matter for a meeting on March 28 (Monday).

This includes Peshawar Development Authority (PDA), the administrations of all four towns, the transport directorate and the traffic police. All participants have been asked to provide the information requested by the applicant.

Abdul Mateen, an RTI commissioner, told The Express Tribune they have given all departments until March 28.

“There should be a board displaying the contractor’s name, the duration of the contract and parking rates.” Mateen added the contracts should also be displayed on the websites of the district or town administrations.

“We are trying to introduce transparency through such efforts,” he said. “We have to check whether a person allotted contracts is providing facilities like water, waiting rooms and washrooms at the bus terminals. In addition, we must check whether action is taken against illegal car parks and bus stands.”

The commissioner added efforts must also be made to inspect vehicles carrying sand in the city.

“We must check whether these [vehicles] are commercial or non-commercial or whether they have permits,” he said.

Published in The Express Tribune, March 25th, 2016.

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