AS THERE were no takers for the air-conditioned fruit and vegetable market in Mohali, an auction of retail and AC booths at the market was cancelled on Tuesday. The market is first of its kind in Punjab.
The auction organised by the Punjab Mandi Board was open to traders of Himachal Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir as well. Officials said that the prospective buyers objected to the high market fee which was more than what was prevalent in Chandigarh.
This is not the first time that buyers did not show any interest in buying any property in Mohali as four recent auctions organised by the Greater Mohali Area Development Authority for the sale of commercial and residential sites failed even after reduction in the reserve prices of the sites.
Punjab Mandi Board vice-president Ravinder Singh Cheema said that 35 retail shops were put up for auction while around 80 AC booths were put up for auction on Tuesday but they had to cancel the auction as the traders did not show any interest in buying these sites. The reserve price for a retail shop was fixed at Rs 1.53 crore while that for AC booth was Rs 40 lakh.
He said that the traders raised the issue of high market fee in Mohali than in neigbouring Chandigarh. In Mohali, the market fee is 4 per cent while in Chandigarh it is 1 per cent. Cheema said that now they would hold a meeting on February 24 and decide on the issue of reduction in the market fee of shops at the market.
The AC market was inaugurated by Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal in 2014 but since then the market has been lying empty.