Written by Staff Writer
05 Jan, 2022 | 12:13 am
COLOMBO (News 1st); It is reported that vehicles are no longer permitted to park along with Galle Face Green in Colombo.
A group of activists gathered near Galle Face Green at around 10 am on Tuesday (4) to inquire into a situation that involved parking in the area.
“We want to know where the commission is going”, Venerable Akmeemana Dayarathna Thero said, upon discussions with the Police near Galle Face Green after he said that he knew of reports that vehicles were being diverted to a popular shopping mall in the area, which would ultimately lead to foreign companies profiting off higher parking fees than what is being offered at Galle Face’s parking spots.
“When it goes to this mall, where does the money end up? Directly to Chinese companies. The hourly fee there is Rs. 100/- and anything above that is Rs. 200/- per hour. So when people come to Galle Face Green with their families, how can they afford such an amount? Looking for parking everywhere means that fuel is wasted and the more that happens, the more we have to import fuel and then dollars are spent on that.”
The prohibition of parking near the Galle Face Green premises also means that this might discourage people from visiting the area, voices activists.
Consequently, vendors who earn an income from this are also hindered. “Corona has affected these vendors who look for income and prohibiting people from parking does them no favours”, the Venerable Thero added.
Shalika Perera, another activist commented on the plight of the people in the present situation. “People are under stress these days. This is a place where people come to relieve their stress… what is the point of giving people more stress to them when they already have problems like milk powder and gas shortages, and no cement if they want to build a house?”
If the alleged claims are true, where does the parking fee of hundreds of people and families go?
Asanka Ruwan Pothupitiya, an activist, commented on this. “When the country can benefit from getting fees from the Galle Face Green’s parking spot, why are we giving it to this shopping mall, which is owned by a Chinese company? A Chinese company is going to profit from this”, Pothupitiya said.
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