Street vending plan: Patiala MC awaits official notification
With all other formalities complete, the Patiala municipal corporation (MC) now awaits the final notification from the local bodies department for implementation of the street vending plan in Patiala.
The civic body is under a legal obligation to accommodate street vendors under provisions of the Street Vendors’ Act, but the project is in a limbo since over six years.
MC commissioner Poonamdeep Kaur said that even in finalising the budgetary proposals for the next fiscal, they have set a target of collecting ₹10 lakh under the street vending policies.
She said that they have completed all formalities including development of site and received a green signal from the director local government. “The policy will be implemented once the formal notification is issued for rehabilitating of street vendors to the newly-developed market,” she said.
She added that the municipal corporation (MC) has declared as many as 28 prominent locations from where the vendors will be rehabilitated to the new marketplace.
In the absence of any street vending policy, the vendors continue to create chaos in major locations and cause inconvenience to residents.
Mayor Sanjeev Sharma Bittu said that they cannot force anyone or ask the vendors to shift to the new location without any formal notification. “Once the notification is issued, we will make the vendors aware about the policy before mandating them to move to the new place,” he said.
To see light of day after five years
Under the Street Vendors’ Act of 2014, the MC is under legal obligation to regulate street vending businesses.
Inaugurated with much fanfare, the MC’s street vending plan seems to have failed to take off due to delay in getting clearance.
Punjab sports minister Rana Gurmit Singh Sodhi and Patiala MP (member Parliament) Preneet Kaur had inaugurated the first phase of the new vendors market under the plan for rehabilitation of street vendors, on August 14, 2019.
Under the plan, as many as 400 street vendors were to be rehabilitated at a new location, which sprawls in over 2.5 acre near the Sanauri Gate. Shifting street vendors to this market will help people purchase household items from one designated location.
As many as 4,025 street vendors were identified by the private consultants hired by the MC for systematic implementation of the policy.
As per the Street Vendors Act of 2014, the civic body has to ensure protection of the urban street vendors, along with regulating street vending. Under the Act, a town vending panel will be constituted, which will collect details of the existing street vendors in the city. The registered vendors will then be given smart cards.
The MC had included 28 areas to its list of ‘no-vending’ zones including Choti Baradari, Mata Kaushalya Hospital road, bus stand roundabout, Leela Bhawan Road, Nabha Road Chowk, Thapar University traffic lights, mini-secretariat road, Khanda Square, Gurdwara Dukhniwaran Sahib’s periphery, road opposite to MC office, Sheranwala Gate, Lehal Square, Qila Mubarak road, Kohli Chowk, Parshuram Chowk, YPS Road, and Modi College Road.