As lack of proper lighting,highly insanitary conditions and water logging continue to plague the underground subway of Chandigarh joining Sectors 22 and 17,the shop- owners are suffering from a host of problems due to the same.
With only three shops functioning in the area out of the total fourteen,the shop owners are blaming the high rent of the shops as the main reason behind their unfeasible businesses.
The lack of proper lighting in the subway is the major cause of the shop-owners worries.
Although proper lighting is the responsibility of the Municipal Corporation (MC),the shop-owners claim that the corporation does not carry out the task and thus they are forced to get lights installed in the part of the ceiling above their particular shops.
The smashing of the lights by miscreants and their re-installation by us has become a regular phenomenon now. Although it is not our responsibility,we are forced to do it because our business suffers, said one of the shop-owners of the subway.
Another owner elaborated,Fearing the presence of miscreants,customers,especially women,never prefer to use the subway at night. Since we lose our customers due to the same,we are forced to get the lights installed ourselves. A few months ago,we had spoken to the authorities about the problems that we have been facing but nothing has been done until now.
Also,highly unhygienic and insanitary conditions have become a major headache for the shop-owners of the subway.
Around 20-30 thousand people pass through the subway on a daily basis,but unfortunately,there is not even a single dustbin in the entire subway. We have ourselves got a sweeper employed whom we pay Rs 2000 monthly by pooling in the money. She cleans the subway once in the morning but since most of the passers-by throw waste here,it starts stinking by the afternoon, informed the shop owners further.
Water logging in the subway during the rainy season worsens the situation. As the water from the bus stand flows out towards the subway,shop owners say that garbage floating in the water makes it extremely tough for people to cross it in case of heavy rains.
Commenting on the problems faced by the shop-owners of the subway,Municipal Commissioner,V P Singh said,There are very few shops that are functioning in the subway and its proper management will be possible only if the remaining shops also open up.
We have to formulate new policies for these shops but the process will take some time. As far as lights are concerned,we will definitely get them installed in the area as soon as possible, Singh further added.