The Delhi High Court on Monday took a serious view of the crackdown against catering vans and chef carts in the capital and sought a clear policy by May 21 on issuance of no objection certificates (NOC) to them.
Seeking streamlining of the policy, Justice Hima Kohli questioned why multiple agencies were involved in issuance of NOC and why a catering van which obtained clearance from traffic police required further approval from civic agencies such as MCD and DDA."Multiple agencies need to work in tandem and we need a clear policy," said the judge.The matter reached the court through a batch of petitions filed by owners of such vans that were once stationed in markets in Dwarka sectors 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 and 12, but were ordered by the MCD, DDA to shift citing traffic congestion. This was surprisingly after the Delhi traffic police had given them clearance. The court order came after Manjit Ahluwalia, lawyer for the van owners, accused the civic bodies of not drafting a uniform policy despite repeated directions.
The court had earlier emphasised on the need for chef carts and mobile catering vans to provide ready-to-eat food to a large chunk of the floating population in the city ."Not everyone is rich enough to go to upmarket restaurants. One must consider the moving population of Delhi. Where do they go when they want to eat hygienic food at an economical rate? Delhi is also known for its street food. Chef carts or catering vans are not an extraordinary sight," Justice Kohli said.
DDA, MCD, NDMC and traffic police have been asked to consult each other and come up with an unambiguous policy by May 21.