CHENNAI: A section of vendors on Marina Beach has moved the Madras High Court challenging the Greater Chennai Corporation move to allot 900 modern vending carts through drawing of lots. The petitioner alleged that the corporation did not conduct a proper survey and issued identification cards only to those with political influence in the locality. The court has issued a notice to the state and Chennai Corporation to file a detailed report.
The two-member vacation bench of Justices R Mahadevan and Anita Sumanth issued the notice on the plea moved by P Muthu, president of the Tamilnadu Netaji Subhash Chandrabose Welfare Association for fishermen.
According to the petitioner, overcrowding of vendors was witnessed since many who are not holding identity cards have illegally set up shops. If illegal vendors are restricted, congestion on the beach can be avoided. Since there were no regulations in place, much less being implemented by the Corporation, the beach was overcrowded with such unauthorised hawkers.
Hence, vendors of the association who are valid holders of ID cards and have been running shops for decades cannot be forced to undergo hardship over the inaction of the Corporation in controlling illegal vendors. Further, many vendors are women who will be hit hard and forced to be on the streets, he said.
The petitioner also stated that the vendors are running their shopping carts on the Marina for 2 to 3 generations and if the number is reduced to 900, the livelihood of several vendors who are dependent on these carts for the past several decades would be affected.
The petitioner sought an interim stay of all proceedings that are being carried out by the Chennai Corporation by terming it illegal. The court recorded the submissions made by the counsel and issued notices to the state and Chennai Corporation to respond by January 8.