Love the view and the food at your favourite Khan Market joint? Go the whole hog, 'cause come next week you may not find it there.
The New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) has decided to seal all second and third floor commercial establishments in the market, saying they're illegal. Notices are being sent to the owners of properties on the first floor who have set up businesses or rented out space by building additional floors.
"We have started issuing final notices to the traders to remove illegal constructions such as additional floors. If they fail to comply, we'll seal them," said Anand Tiwari, NDMC spokesman. The drive begins after Holi, March 20.
Apart from 150 shops, 74 flats on the first floor were turned into commercial establishment on payment of conversion charges.
The issue was discussed in a meeting called by a Supreme Court-appointed monitoring committee. "Even after paying conversion charge, traders can only operate from the first floor and barsaati," said Bhure Lal, a member of the committee.
A number of restaurants are running from the second and third floors and will have to be shut, he said. "We have said this a number of times that sub-division of plots is not allowed."
Eating joints were given time till February 16 to carry out necessary changes.
Traders are unhappy. "We're yet to get details from the NDMC. We are here on rent and started operating last year. It will be unfortunate if they shut us down," said Manish Kumar, manager of Market Café.
"If we have paid conversion charges for both the first and second floors, how can they seal our establishments? This is unfair," said Navneet Kalra, owner of Khan Chacha.