The meat shops in Ghaziabad will start getting licences to sell meat and other products from the Ghaziabad municipal corporation once the guidelines, including those from the National Green Tribunal (NGT), are incorporated in the licensing process.
Ghaziabad district magistrate (DM) said that the process will start within a week. A majority of shops selling mutton, chicken and fish has shut after police and administration teams began a crackdown on shops operating without licences. The shopkeepers said the corporation issued licences earlier but refused to renew them since the past two years.
“We denounce roadside shops, which operate in an unhygienic manner and may also lead to health ailments to citizens. We will not come out in their support at any cost. We have proper shops allotted by agencies and operating since 1976. Now, suddenly we have been asked to close. We have copies of licences by the corporation but they did not renew it for the past two years. What is our fault?” said Yaad Ilahi Qureshi, a shop owner in Raj Nagar.
According to Mayor Ashu Verma, there are 26 shops in the city zone, 97 each in Mohan Nagar and Vasundhara zones while no details are available for Kavi Nagar and Vijay Nagar zones.
The shopkeepers said that the licences were issued at Rs 300 for chicken and Rs 600 for goat meat. However, following the crackdown, even small restaurants, dhabas and kiosks serving meat have shut shop.
“”The eateries serving mutton and chicken that would do brisk business also remained shut in the last two days. We were not told why we should close. When we asked why licences were not renewed, officials had no answer,” said Riyazuddin, another shop owner.
The moves against the illegal shops and slaughterhouses came after Yogi Adityanath assumed office as UP chief minister. When asked why the shops were allowed to operate during the previous regime, the corporation’s city health officer Dr RK Yadav, said, “No comments.”
However, he said that a copy of bylaws along with directions of the NGT with regard to slaughterhouses and shops were sent to different departments for further adding their inputs/suggestions. A committee has been formed to update the guidelines issued by various agencies and follow them before issuing licences.
“We expect that the guidelines will be formed soon and the process of issue of licences will start within a week. There have been some orders by the NGT so the corporation stopped issue of licences. The shops were functioning earlier and will now be regularised as per the guidelines,” said Nidhi Kesarwani, district magistrate, Ghaziabad.