CHENNAI: While the city Corporation’s ‘a place for everything and everything in its place’ line of working with regard to relocating street vendors has been welcomed by several residents, the vendors say the authorities had not discussed the move with them. With a plan to relocate nearly 30 per cent of street vendors in the city in order to free roads and footpaths apart from giving the city a facelift, the Corporation, over the last few months, earmarked certain road sides as vending zones. The survey found that around 12,000 of the total 40,000 street vendors in the city were operating in non-vending zones, affecting traffic flow or pedestrian movement.
Officials said these vendors need not worry since they will be accommodated in the identified vending zones. “In Marina and Besant Nagar, we are procuring 1,400 sleek vending carts at the cost of Rs26 crore,” a Corporation official said. However, president of Chennai Street Vendors Association C Thiruvettai said that the issue was not raised in any Town Vending Committees’ meetings.
“Members of our association are part of the town vending committees but no one has officially told us about the vendors’ removal or relocation,” he added. Thiruvettai urged the officials to ensure that the relocated vendors are able to earn as much income as they earned in their old areas, in the new spots.
The Corporation official added that they are planning to bring the project under the National Urban Livelihoods Mission, and as a result receive funding of about `400 crore in different stages, for all vendors.
The civic body would own the sleek vending carts and will charge a nominal fee of about `500 per month. “It will also be mandatory to use our carts if anyone wishes to vend in the city,” he added. Meanwhile, a few residents had raised concerns after their streets were declared vending zones.
In case of concern..
A few residents have raised concerns after their streets were declared as vending zones. Public can send in complaints pertaining to vending zones to executive engineers in the 15 zones or can call 1913 helpline