A week after the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) claimed to have taken action against hawkers and evicted them from areas around Dadar railway station, locals rued that hawkers have re-occupied their usual spots and resumed business.
The BMC G-North ward office had beautified Ranade Road and De Silva lane that are perpendicular to Dadar (West) railway station and placed 400 potted plants along the footpaths on the roads in an effort to deter hawking in these no-hawking zones. An amount of Rs3 lakh was spent towards the beautification.
However, rows of hawkers are back to their usual hawking spots with their make-shift carts. Residents said the pots and the hawkers located alongside each other have crowded the footpath further. "We do not know why these plants were placed in the first place. They have made no difference," said a shopkeeper who runs a shop on Ranade Road.
Assistant commissioner of G-North ward, Devendra Jain, said: "It is a well known fact that the premises around Dadar station constitute a large hawking hub. Placing potted plants was an effort to stop hawking. Vehicles have been stationed at non-hawking zones and frequent action is taken by us."
Local citizen groups, however, have supported the BMC's move. "Cracking down on the vast network of hawkers is not an easy task. The G-North ward office has shown will and initiated action against hawkers," said Esme Lobo, secretary, Citizens' Forum G-North.