The Chandigarh Municipal Corporation on Monday decided to give designated open spaces to shopkeepers to put up festival stalls. This decision was taken at a meeting attended by Municipal Commissioner KK Yadav, Senior Superintendent of Police Nilambari Vijay Jagdale, Additional Deputy Commissioner and other officers.
However, the decision did not go down well with the traders.
Speaking to Chandigarh Newsline, Municipal Commissioner Yadav said that he had asked the architect wing of the corporation to identify all the open designated spaces falling within the vicinity of the markets.
“The architect wing will give us a list of all those open areas which are falling in the vicinity of the commercial areas. By Tuesday evening, we will get the list and the traders will be offered those slots for setting up their stalls,” Yadav said.
One of the issues discussed at the meeting was if pavements could be given to traders to put up stalls.
However, it was decided to write to the Chief Architect of Chandigarh asking for his opinion if the pavements could be used for that.
“In the meeting, I did speak to the Chief Architect about these pavements. He said these are for pedestrian movement. If these are pedestrian paths then permission cannot be given. However, the Chief Architect said he will still check and get back to us. So we will be writing to him tomorrow to give us a report on the same,” Yadav said.
Already the UT senior standing counsel in his legal opinion had stated that parking areas and corridors should not be allowed for putting up stalls.
The traders opposed the decision to give open designated spaces for putting up stalls. They were hoping to use pavements for putting up stalls.
President of Chandigarh Beopar Mandal Anil Vohra said, “Small traders do not have this kind of manpower. They cannot afford to deploy some workers at stalls located at far-off places. It is just this time of the year when we people can hope to earn a little but this time they have just spoiled our festivals.”
Vohra said that if permission to put up stalls on pavements is not granted, it will be a black festival season for them.
In view of Karva Chauth that falls on October 17, the corporation had decided to give permission to the Mehandi stalls inside the community centers throughout the city from October 15 to 17. But the traders assert that apart from Mehandi, women also need other items like bangles stalls for which cannot be put up there. “They have already spoilt our Karva Chauth festival,” Vohra said.