Other side of visit is a bitter pill to swallow: Vendors
PM’s May 26 visit to Guwahati
By our Staff Reporter
GUWAHATI, May 21: The GMC, by asking the vendors of the city to close their shops till the Prime Minister’s visit to Guwahati on May 26, has put the latter in a to-obey-or-not-to-obey dilemma. The other side of the coin is a bitter pill to swallow for a section of city vendors.
Addressing the media at Guwahati Press Club here today, Street Vendors’ Association of Assam (SVAA) president ren Rajbongshi said: “The GMC has unofficially asked a section of vendors not to do business on the road where the Prime Minister rendra Modi’s convoy is supposed to roll during his visit to Guwahati. When a vendor is asked to close his/her shop, he/she is scared of his/her children starving, let alone meeting their other cost. If we obey the verbal order of the GMC, we see a difficult time awaiting us and our families. If we dare ignore the verbal order from the civic body, we foresee a trail of coercion for one or the other reasons.”
Rajbonghsi said: “Street vending has been recognized as one of the professions in India through the implementation of the Street Vendors (Protection of Livelihood and Regulation of Street Vending) Act, 2014. The GMC, without implementing the Act, has rather opted to a policy of evicting street vendors at the drop of a hat. The Prime Minister is going to visit the city on May 26. For us the other side of the Prime Minister’s visit is a bitter pill to swallow.”
The SVAA sets it demands right ahead of the Prime Minister’s visit to the State. Rajbongshi said: “We want the GMC to immediately implement the Street Vendors (Protection of Livelihood and Regulation of Street Vending) Act, 2014, besides immediate issuance of identity cards and registration cards to the vendors, immediate rehabilitation of the evicted vendors and compensation to their demolished goods, payment of allowances to the vendors till their rehabilitation from the date of their eviction, setting up of vending zones at all business centres in the city, and immediate halt to the eviction of vendors till the issuance of identity cards, registration cards, demarcation of vending zones and rehabilitation of evicted vendors in accordance with the verdicts of the Supreme Court and the Gauhati High Court.”