Realising it would be detrimental for its prospects in the upcoming assembly polls, BJP-ruled Municipal Corporation of Delhi has decided not to shut down illegal dhabas or roadside eating joints as directed by the Delhi High Court. Instead, it has decided to contest the order in the higher court.
“An appeal will be filed to review the High Court directions to close such dhabas. It appears actual facts have not been placed before the court. The need of the hour is to evolve a system so that lakhs of people continue to get hygienic food at cheap rates,” said Vijendra Gupta, chairman of the MCD’s standing committee.
According to the civic agency, there are approximately 20,000 dhabas currently falling under the jurisdiction of 12 zones of the civic body. It is planning to carry out a survey to ascertain legal and illegal dhabas.
“To conduct such a survey, we will need at least three months’ time. The record of ownership of land on which the dhaba is situated will also have to be obtained,” added Gupta.
The civic agency is also planning to issue more licences so that there is no scarcity of dhabas in the city. In addition to this, the civic agency has said that it will provide cooperation to any organisation that would be able to supply tiffin as an alternative system.
The civic body is proposing to amend provisions of Section 421 of the Delhi Municipal Act for which orders would be issued soon. Till that time it has appealed that the dhabas should continue to run.