Unauthorised juice stalls escape MC’s wrath

  • Harshraj Singh, Hindustan Times, Ludhiana
  • Updated: Oct 17, 2014 10:16 IST

In yet another example of its pick and choose policy, the team of municipal corporation (MC) allegedly spared a few unauthorised stalls during an anti-encroachment drive on the premises of mini-secretariat on Thursday.

The MC team returned after removing only eight unauthorised stalls, while claiming that they had no information whether the stalls that it spared were unauthorised.

However, through a Right to Information Act (RTI) reply, the district administration has maintained that it had not permitted any juice bars to run on the mini-secretariat premises.

On the other hand, the persons running these stalls claimed that they were victims of the anti Sikh riots of 1984, and had been given permission more than 10 years ago to run these stalls.

When the MC team tried to remove these stalls on Thursday, some persons intervened in the matter, following which the team retreated.

An advocate, Amit Sood, claimed that despite knowing that the stalls were running without permission, the MC refrained from acting against them as they were running under political patronage.

Sood demanded that deputy commissioner Rajat Agarwal look into the matter. “The information obtained under RTI states that no permission was granted to run juice bars on the premises,” he added.

Assistant commissioner (general) Navraj Singh Brar said, “The administration has not allowed any stalls to run on premises of the complex. I will look into why the encroachments were not removed by the municipal corporation.”

Meanwhile, MC’s tehbazari wing superintendent Rajeev Bharadwaj claimed, “We took action on directions of the deputy commissioner. However, we were not sure if these stalls had permission. We will act further once their status is clear.”

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