THE CHANDIGARH Cracker Sellers Association held a protest against the UT Administration on Wednesday for not paying heed to their demands. The association is expected to hold a protest at the deputy commissioner’s office here on Thursday morning as well. Traders have been opposing the designated sites identified by UT. They said if not markets, they should at least be allowed to set up shop in open spaces nearby. The traders shouted slogans against the department, alleging that though they have been shuttling from one department to the other, no definite decision is being taken over setting up stalls at the market. The association has given a list of 20 such additional sites in urban areas and open grounds in villages to set up stalls.
Chirag Aggarwal, general secretary of the association, however, said, “The officials are not cooperating with us at all. We have given these additional sites but they aren’t responding.”
The association said they have already purchased stocks worth thousands and the fate of their stalls is still not known.
Devinder Gupta, president of the association, said, “It is the failure of the system that just a week is left for Diwali, but we are running from pillar to post to put across our demands. The entire day we keep waiting to meet the officers, who remain busy at meetings.”
There are as many as 80 new dealers, who have applied for licence to be given permit to sell crackers in Chandigarh, but the administration has not given the go-ahead till now.
Shopkeepers said it has been a month since they have applied for licence, but haven’t got it till now. Chandigarh Beopar Mandal President Anil Vohra said they met the DC on the issue. “It is just for three days once a year that these traders sell crackers. They are small traders. The administration must pay heed to them.”