With election code of conduct being enforced in the city for the legislative council elections, the demands by political parties, led by Mayor Prashant Jagtap, in Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) to allow firecracker stalls on DP road, near Mhatre Bridge, is unlikely to be met with the civic fire department refusing to give permission for it.
The roadside along DP road, near Mhatre Bridge, which falls in the heart of the city, has been the favourite place for wholesalers of fire crackers in the city to sell their products. While the local residents have been opposing it, citing inconvenience caused to them, the PMC administration has relented to the demands of the firecracker sellers’ and politicians’ demands.
Additional Municipal Commissioner Prerna Deshbhratar said, “We have already taken a decision not to allow fire cracker stalls, alongside DP road, near Mhatre Bridge. There are reasons for shifting it as the local residents were opposing it and the stall owners had given in writing that they would not insist again to set up the stall in the area.”
She said there might be a demand from elected representatives to allow stalls near Mhatre area but the civic administration will have to consider the election code of conduct before changing the decision to meet the demands of the elected members of PMC.
PMC Chief Fire Officer Prashant Ranpise said the civic administration had last year allowed the firecracker stalls on DP road, near Mhatre Bridge, after the owners gave an affidavit that they would not seek permission the next year. “The wholesalers of firecrackers had submitted affidavit that they would not insist for permission to set up stalls on DP road. The local residents had been urging the civic administration to not allow the stalls on the roads as it causes inconvenience to them. Thus, this year, the permission was not given,” he said.
The civic administration has identified at least 10 locations across the city for allowing firecracker market with one near Mullick Garden for wholesale market, he said, adding, “The civic fire department gave a no-objection certificate for putting stalls in locations in Katraj, Hadapsar, Nagar road, Vishrantwadi and few other places.”
On the political leaders in PMC supporting stalls near Mhatre Bridge, he said, “I have learnt of the demand but it would be up to the civic chief to respond to it. There is also an election code of conduct in place so don’t know whether their demand would be taken into consideration or not.”
On Wednesday, the leaders of various political parties urged the civic administration to allow the firecracker stalls on DP road near Mhatre Bridge. “The demands of locals citing inconvenience do not hold right as there is more inconvenience caused due to restaurants and marriage halls on DP road,” they said.
Mayor Prashant Jagtap had assured the general body meeting that he would convene a meeting of leaders of all political parties in PMC to take up the issue with the civic administration to allow the fire cracker stalls.