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HindustanTimes Sun,20 Apr 2014

Deadline over, MC fails to act against street food vendors in city

Arjun Sharma , Hindustan Times  Ludhiana, November 19, 2013
First Published: 01:08 IST(19/11/2013) | Last Updated: 01:09 IST(19/11/2013)

The building branch of Ludhiana Municipal Corporation has miserably failed in taking action against street food vendors operating openly on vacant plots violating norms.

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The MC had served notices to the owners of vacant plot holders and had asked them to reply within 72 hours on November 6. But even after 12 days (288 hours), the MC building branch is still sitting on its hands.

The notice was served by the MC asking the land owners, on which these cluster of carts are operating, to get a Change of Land Use (CLU) certificate and also to make parking provisions in front of these plots.

Assistant town planner (ATP) Rajinder Sharma of Zone D, where maximum street food vendors are operating, served the notice to the land owners but did not care to take action against them after the expiry of the time.

These vacant plots are rent out at exorbitant prices to different street-food vendors which are become a menace now, as absence of parking space disrupts traffic as those who visit these 'chowpattis' park cars haphazardly on roads.

On the other hand, the MC is facing huge loss as the plot owners have not paid any fee to the civic body for using their land for commercial purpose.

These vacant lands are working without a CLU permit which is against the norms.

What is surprising is that even as such large number of vacant lands have been converted into commercial hubs, the building branch of the area concerned have not taken any action against them.

Isha Kalia, who is the additional commissioner and chief of building branch of the MC, said: "The notices were served to the owners of the vacant lands, where commercial activities are going on. Some of the owners have replied that they will obtain a CLU, while some have said that they will halt operations."

She informed that two major issues concerned the MC: "One was that of the CLU and another was regarding haphazard parking in front of these plots. We have asked the plot owners to make provisions for parking," Kalia said.

The role of building inspectors is also under scanner as they are responsible to keep a tab on the ongoing construction in their respective blocks.

The inspectors as well as the ATP of the area concerned, where such vacant plots have been were converted into commercial hubs have failed in performing their duty.

AREA OF CONCERN

Some of the areas, where these cluster of eateries have come up, include Ghumar Mandi, Mall Road, Hambran Road and Badi Haebowal, while some others are also coming up in different areas.

The owners of these vacant land earn up to nearly `3 lakh a month, but they do not pay any fee to the MC.

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