The Delhi High Court had, in 2017, pulled up the Delhi Development Authority (DDA) and the North MCD for failing to shift traders from the Walled City to the integrated freight complex (IFC) in Narela, despite plots being allotted for the purpose.
Two years on, not a single trader has moved to the area, which was built to act as a centre for offloading and picking up wholesale goods arriving from or being sent to other states, so the national capital, especially Old Delhi, could be decongested. The North civic body, however, maintains that none of the 600 chemical traders, who have made partial payments for allotment, are operating in the area.
North MCD commissioner Varsha Joshi said a survey had been completed last year. “We are doing a final re-verification to ensure that none are left operating within the Walled City. We have found none so far during the re-verification… of the 640 in the original list. So they have either already shifted to Narela or elsewhere or shut shop,” she said.
A senior DDA official said traders have flagged problems regarding water, electricity and streetlights to avoid taking possession in Narela. At the IFC, land and facilities are provided by DDA while the construction has to be done by the trader. The land size varies from 50-100 sqm and traders are charged a concessional rate of around Rs 30,000 per sqm. The traders have paid a part of the money, which was a pre-requisite for getting the land allotted, said a DDA official.
DDA vice-chairperson Tarun Kapoor said there were delays due to the construction ban, but they are hopeful traders would be moved in the coming months.