Street Vendors’ Act: 5 years on, GMADA approves eight vending sites in Mohali
Over five years after the municipal corporation started identification of vendors in the city, the Greater Mohali Area Development Authority (GMADA) has approved eight of the total 14 vending sites proposed around the city.
These will be handed over to the civic body on March 8, which will pave the way for implementation of the Street Vendors’ (Protection of Livelihood and Regulation of Street Vending) Act, 2014.
The eight sites were earmarked following a joint survey by MC and GMADA a few months back.
The Act is aimed at registering and rehabilitating street vendors and also saving them from exploitation at the hands of enforcement officers. It also calls for proper rationing of urban streets and spaces.
A senior GMADA official said the chief administrator will accord the final approval by Friday, following which they will hand over the eight sites to MC by March 8.
“Once we get the space, we will begin the process of developing them and allotting sites to vendors, which will take around two months,” said MC commissioner Kamal Kumar Garg.
In the absence of implementation of the Act, illegal vendors have been thriving at several main markets of the city, especially in Phases 7, 3B1, 3B2, 9, 10 and 11.
“For years, we have been urging the authorities to take action against illegal vendors, but to no avail. The parking lots are left with no space due to encroachments by them,” said Jatinder Pal Singh, president, Phase 3B2 Market Welfare Association.
Identification process started in 2015
At least 993 vendors were identified in an MC survey that was initiated in 2015. A private firm hired by MC to carry out the survey had initially shortlisted at least 2,295 vendors, but the MC House found anomalies in the survey and ordered a fresh one. In 2017, the civic body had concluded there were 993 moving and stationary vendors.
In January last year, MC had decided to implement the Act first in Phase 7, where as many as 139 vendors are registered. The MC commissioner had even asked the agency that conducted the survey to mark vending space in the parking areas, but the plan had fallen flat following objections by the market welfare association and area councillor.
Thereon, MC issued identity cards to 200 of the 993 vendors, but they were never given designated spaces to carry out their trade.
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