Traders can conduct their business in peace during Diwali, as three civic corporations of the Capital have decided to postpone sealing till the festivities are over.
The East Corporation had earlier decided to seal more than 18,500 establishments over the non-payment of conversion charges from Monday. But due to non-availability of police forces, it has decided to scrap the plan for now.
"The police are busy preparing the city for the festive season, which is why they can't give us the required forces. So we are postponing the sealing drive," said SS Yadav, commissioner of East Delhi Municipal Corporation.
Yadav said defaulters can pay the money and get their name struck off the sealing list. While 13,928 properties fall in the Shahadra (South) zone, 4,656 properties are in Shahadra (North) zone.
The North Corporation has decided to extend the time to October 31. It has already sent notices to about 5,000 commercial establishments - 240 in Karol Bagh zone, 1,200 in Sadar Paharganj Zone, 180 in City zone, 480 in Civil Lines zone, 366 in Rohini zone and 460 in Narela zone. After the deadline, the municipal body plans to print the names of the highest defaulters in newspapers in a bid to shame them into paying the money.
"There are thousands of defaulters. Our officials are carrying out a survey to identify more establishments that have not paid the charges. The deadline for the completion of the survey as well as for the payment is October 31," said Yogender Chandolia, chairman, standing committee, North Corporation.
In the South Corporation too, a survey has started to trace the offenders. According to a rough estimate, the corporation can earn about Rs. 100 crore through the collection drive.
The conversion charges are to be paid to the civic bodies for setting up commercial establishments in areas marked for residential purposes.