Stay firm, save money

It seems like I can’t stay out of trouble on roads these days.

My car was impounded by the traffic police today, from Saddar area (near old Rex cinema). A ‘no parking’ sign was nowhere near the spot where I parked my car. I take extra care parking my car in Saddar because it has been lifted twice before. After making sure my car was safe (there were dozens of cars parked in the lane), I went on with my business and when I came back it was missing.

Had it been my first time, I would have panicked that the car got stolen, but I knew it was the police. So I walked to the place where they keep all the impounded cars (it was 5 minutes away). I had predetermined not to argue with the police wala, as it’s no use, just pay the fine and whatever and get my car back. But I did tell him there was no ‘no parking’ sign there. Guess what I was told? “We don’t put signs everywhere but some places are no parking nevertheless.” Great! That means my car can be lifted from any place any time. I was told to pay Rs. 220 as towing charges and get a ticket for Rs. 215 for parking violation, which I had to pay at a bank. But, if I paid Rs. 400 in cash I wouldn’t get any ticket (and save Rs. 35 and the annoyance of paying the fine at the bank and getting my license back). I paid the towing fees but I refused to give any extra money to the dude and insisted on getting a ticket. He then started negotiating and offered me to pay him 100 bucks extra and get my license back on the spot. I still insisted on getting the ticket. Next thing I knew he handed me back my driver’s license and let me go with my car. Woohoo!! I only paid 220 bucks for towing.

Moral of the story: You decide.

13 Comments so far

  1. Kashif (unregistered) on September 5th, 2006 @ 4:28 pm

    That area is no-parking for sure. Better ask the shopkeepers next time before parking. Once I tried to park near star cinema and a shopkeeper guided me to safe spot.

  2. Teeth Maestro (unregistered) on September 5th, 2006 @ 4:34 pm

    Damn, I don’t know about you, but if I see my car missing I would first think STOLEN CAR – police violation comes a rare second.

    Moral of the story you still need to haggle and argue your way even if you are determined to pay the official fee

  3. Bamboo Guy (unregistered) on September 5th, 2006 @ 4:54 pm

    B*stard police and their f**king system!

  4. Fantaz (unregistered) on September 5th, 2006 @ 5:39 pm

    Get a big ass SUV and park it on top of the No Parking sign and see how the police wala will turn his face away , the law is only for the small car owners . That’s what i missed the most about Karachi abroad drive any way you like who cares P.S never tell the judge abroad when contesting a driving ticket that you should be thankful that i didn;t drive like i used to in Karachi. It will instantly add 4 points to your driving record

  5. mansoor (unregistered) on September 5th, 2006 @ 5:58 pm

    umar.. arent you having just a little too many car adventures nowadays :D

  6. IllusionFS (unregistered) on September 5th, 2006 @ 5:59 pm

    Mansoor, they are actually right when they say that they cannot put a No Parking sign everywhere.. like they cannot put a sign on every sq ft of land..
    You naughty boy, you took the risk :P

  7. RAMZAN (unregistered) on September 5th, 2006 @ 6:21 pm

    to ask a nearest shop keeper is a best idea otherwise these policewalas never listens to others .. MAY GOD CALL THEM ALL TO HELL SOON.

  8. Jamash (unregistered) on September 5th, 2006 @ 8:17 pm

    Get a bumper sticker which says ” My uncle in an MPA , Toe my car and he will toe you !” :P

  9. danny (unregistered) on September 6th, 2006 @ 1:36 am

    Seems to me that the policeman knew he was wrong and that’s why he didn’t want to write out a ticket, because he was afraid when you explained the situation to a traffic court judge, the policewala would be in the wrong. (coz of the missing no parking sign)

  10. Salman Sheikh (unregistered) on September 6th, 2006 @ 1:38 am

    and you think you paid 220 for towing only…. well my friend that police wala had a share in that too….

  11. Khurram Farooq (unregistered) on September 6th, 2006 @ 1:53 am

    TeethMaestro: You drive a Hilux Vigo, so I doubt any policeman would touch your car even in a no-parking zone :)

    I have also had my car lifted from Saddar twice, and both times I only paid 100rs. The key is that you have to remain firm and tell their superior that there is no indication of no-parking. If he says there is, you just tell him to go with you and check out the area. It might take 30-60 minutes with all the bickering, but in the end I paid only rs. 100 both times. Your milage may vary.

  12. yo yo (unregistered) on September 6th, 2006 @ 4:23 am

    Just print a visting card of some ARMY MAJOR..tell him hes your brother and see the police melt down. I have used this trick many times.

  13. umar (unregistered) on September 6th, 2006 @ 10:09 am

    danny, there are no traffic court judges here. he just didnt want any money to go the government.

    yoyo: I don’t need anything else when my father is in army, but i dont like to use his name when I can get out of situations myself.

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