'Hawkers and their families in dire strait'
SILCHAR, Jan 10: Hundreds of hawkers and their families as well as the assistants engaged have been put in serious problem due to a state government notification of January 1. The notification issued from Dispur and communicated to the Deputy Commissioners of all the districts, sub divisiol officers and principal secretaries of autonomous district councils refers to a letter of Indian Oil Corporation. The letter in question asks to ensure that no agent, hawker or retailer is allowed lifting of kerosene oil from January to March. This will remain in force till receipt of government instruction and order in this regard.
This order from Dispur says that since tiol Food Security Act (NFSA) is in vogue, fresh instruction from the government is awaited. The matter has been listed as most urgent. In fact, the agents, hawkers and retailers are in a fix as their very existence or survival is at stake. Moreover, the notification which has been issued without much clarification has created lot of confusion. In order to find out a way from this impasse, all the hawkers of Cachar district today assembled in Gandhi Bhawan here and held a meeting.
After threadbare discussions and exchange of views, it was resolved to form a 22 member committee under the chairmanship of Shyamapada Roy and under the banner of Super Kerosene Oil Hawkers’ Coordition Committee (SKOHCC). Sakal Deb was inducted as general secretary. It was revealed that in all there are 1665 hawkers across the district of Cachar along with their equal number of assistants. If the embargo on hawkers continues, it will seriously affect the sustence and livelihood of all the families involved. It will create a fincial crisis of serious magnitude.
It was not only a question of hawkers, but also the agents and retailers dependent on distribution of kerosene oil. They have been engaged in this profession for many years and it has become the only source of their living. It was further decided that a memorandum on the pressing issue would be submitted to the Deputy Commissioner of Cachar with intimation to the minister of food and civil supply. All the members present opined if nothing concrete or practical emerged, their Committee would be compelled to approach the High Court for redressal. The meeting was presided over by Shyamapada Roy and attended among others by Anjan Chanda, Anju Singh, Ranjan Dhar and Jitendra Tiwari.