For years, the Mohali MC has failed to stop illegal vendors from encroaching upon corridors and parking areas in main markets of the city. (HT File Photo)
For years, the Mohali MC has failed to stop illegal vendors from encroaching upon corridors and parking areas in main markets of the city. (HT File Photo)

Mohali MC to act against encroachments in markets

Responsibility of Mohali MC’s enforcement staff fixed; they have been given a month to act against encroachments in markets; failure will lead to chargesheet or suspension
By Hillary Victor, Mohali
PUBLISHED ON SEP 15, 2021 12:48 AM IST

The Mohali municipal corporation has divided the area under its jurisdiction into four zones to tackle encroachments in markets.

While chairing the civic body’s monthly General House meeting on Tuesday, mayor Amarjit Singh Sidhu said the area inspectors heading the teams will be responsible to get rid of encroachments within one month.

“If they fail to do so, they will be charge-sheeted or suspended,” he said.

A similar order was passed by the then MC commissioner Bhupinder Pal Singh in September 2019, when the city was divided into three zones. However, enforcement remained poor and no action was taken against any of the officials in six months before a countrywide lockdown brought things to a standstill in March 2020.

For years, the MC has failed to stop illegal vendors from operating in main markets of the city. The worst-hit are Phases 7, 3B1, 3B2, 9, 10, and 11, where several vendors have set up their kiosks, selling bags, perfumes, jewellery, footwear, apparels and food items, leaving little space in the corridors and parking areas. The issue has been debated several times in the General House meetings, but to no avail.

Former deputy mayor Manjit Singh Sethi said the number of vendors has gone up in the past three years. “Encroachment drives in the past remained an eyewash as there was collusion between MC officials and vendors,” he said.

The four new teams will be headed by area inspectors Anil Kumar (Zone 1), Varinder Kumar (Zone 2), Harmesh Singh (Zone 3) and Ashok Kumar (Zone 4). The mayor said he is hopeful that they will be able to tackle the encroachment menace.

On the MC enforcement wing having only two vehicles to cover the entire city, the mayor said only one team will go on a round at one time. Meanwhile, an enforcement wing official, who did not wish to be named, said the teams are often hassled by frequent disputes with shopkeepers and vendors, and police presence would aid their efforts.

Mohali MC House approves fire station at Sector 78

The Mohali municipal corporation General House also approved a second fire station in Sector 78 to be built at a cost of 2.92 crore. The House unanimously passed resolutions mainly on the policy of taxi stands and the policy of providing green belts for maintenance. A few councillors asked for a reduction in taxi fee.

Apart from this, various development resolutions worth 19 crore have been passed including road works, paver block works, zebra crossings, painting of centre verges, laying of centre lines and some other development works. All these development works are mainly in Sectors 76 to 80.

A sum of 2.64 has been earmarked for the purchase of boots, gloves, uniforms, rehris, trolleys and other items for the nearly 1000 employees to be recruited for the manual cleaning by the Mohali Municipal Corporation. This resolution was passed through table item.

In addition to this, another important resolution has been passed to outsource the work of mechanical sweeping of city roads. Under this, wall-to-wall sweeping of A roads of the city as well as B roads will now be done mechanically; 37 crore will be spent for three years.

Some opposition councillors made allegations of discrimination against their wards regarding which mayor said that the work of all the wards was being done with full transparency and no one was being discriminated against. He said that if there was any work of a councillor in a ward, he or she could meet him directly at any time.

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