LAHORE - Officials of almost all the public hospitals of the City, deputed at free parking stands are minting millions of rupees by charging parking fees illegally from the patients attendants and other visitors, in clear violation of the government instructions, TheNation has learnt. It was learnt that such hospital officials not only issue unstamped tokens to the visitors but also established their own illegal parking stands within and outside the hospital premises without getting approval from the hospital authorities as well as the authorities concerned of Public Facility Department of City District Government. Public Facility Department (PFD) is the only department of CDG which is authorised to give approval of establishment of parking stands anywhere in the City at the sites suitable for the purpose. But these hospital officials are continuing this illegal practice of charging parking fees unchecked as they have no fear of legal action against them for establishing such stands. According to the CDG policy, bids were invited for giving contract of governments approved sites across the City, specified for the parking stands from which the government generates huge revenue of millions of rupees every year. According to procedure, the department issue printed parking tickets to the approved contractors with mentioning rates of fee for the parking of vehicles in such parking stands while issuance of any other unstamped parking ticket is illegal under CDG bylaws. It may be mentioned here that government have announced free parking facility for the visitors and attendants of the patients in all the hospitals of the City. In this regard, commissioner Lahore and other authorities concerned have identified parking sites for free parking facilities in the premises of the hospitals during their visits. However, it was witnessed that these officials were charging Rs 10 from the motorcyclists and Rs 20 from the owners of the cars. In case of non-payment by any visitor, aware with the policy of free parking facility on part of the government and hospital authorities, these officials used to forcibly halt entry of such vehicles in the hospital premises. When this scribe visited various hospitals including Ganga Ram Hospital, Mayo Hospital, Services Hospital, General Hospital, Jinnah Hospital and some other leading hospitals of the City, the officials were issuing unstamped tickets to the visitors and were charging Rs 10 and Rs 20 as parking fee. However, the officials of Mayo hospital were not charging parking fee from the owners of the cars but were charging Rs 10 from the motorcyclists. An on-duty official at Services Hospital on request of anonymity said that the officials deputed at parking stands were minting thousands of rupees daily. According to a rough estimate, about 200 to 500 cars and other vehicles excluding motorcycles were being parked in the hospital while over 2,000 motorcyclists have been parked at the parking stands in one hospital only. However, District Officer PFD Tanveer Ahmad Khan said that the department launched crackdown against these illegal parking stands, established outside the hospitals by some officials of the hospitals and imposed heavy fines on them besides taking legal actions against them. However, nobody was authorised to charge parking fee at the free parking stands of the hospitals. Establishing illegal parking stands at unapproved sites was an offence.