Union minster for housing and urban poverty alleviation Ajay Maken has complained to lieutenant-governor Tejendra Khanna that the local bodies were harassing and evicting slum dwellers and street vendors despite several laws protecting them from such actions.
In a letter to Khanna, Maken pointed out that any punitive action required to be taken by the local authority against street vendors and slum dwellers must have prior approval from the administrator of the Government of Delhi — the lieutenant-governor — but it is regularly overlooked in areas falling under the North Delhi Municipal Corporation.
The residents of Kamla Nehru Camp and Furniture Block in Kirti Nagar and National Association of Street Vendors of India (NASVI) have recently made representations to the minister against illegal action taken by the civic agencies.
“The street vendors in Karol Bagh area are being regularly harassed and the local bodies demand money from them. We recently wrote to the minister regarding this. We are really happy that ministry has taken cognisance of our letter,” NASVI programme manager Ranjit Abhigyan said.
Maken said in his letter that the Centre had formulated a national policy on urban street vendors to ensure they are able to earn without being harassed by any authority. Rajiv Awas Yojana, a Central government scheme, aims at in-situ upgradation of slums without eviction of residents.