AAP Press Release (Photo Credit: AAP Digital )
New Delhi :
The Kejriwal Government is introducing a highly progressive policy for street vendors in the city. The Aam Aadmi Party will end all extortion and corruption as soon as it comes to power in MCD, informed AAP Chief Spokesperson Shri Saurabh Bhardwaj. It has decided to mark vending zones for street vendors to eliminate any inconvenience faced by vendors and customers both. The MCD and policemen take extra advantage of the current situation and extort large sums of Rs. 500 to 2000 from street vendors, and have their stalls shut down if not paid. With the implementation of the policy, street vendors in Delhi will get a place to efficiently conduct business without any disruption to movement in traffic or footpaths, or to RWAs.
He said that the Aam Aadmi Party will ensure that street vendors don’t pay anything to MCD and police and that every section of Delhi will benefit from the new policy. Town Vending Committees will survey and identify street vendors by December 7, 2021. The remaining vendors can register themselves by then. As of 30 September 2021, 23,951 street vendors had been identified by South MCD, 27,819 by North MCD and 19,577 by East MCD. BJP’s ‘Jhuggi Samman Yatra’ program is futile if its councilors don’t stop extorting money from street vendors - stopping this will be the biggest honor for the vendors, said Shri Saurabh Bhardwaj.
Problems concerning street vendors and their logistics a major issue in most metros in the country: Saurabh Bhardwaj
Addressing a major problem in Delhi, AAP Chief Spokesperson Shri Saurabh Bhardwaj said, “The issue of street vendors in urban clusters in not just Delhi, but all metros across India, have been a major topic of contention. There are essentially two points to keep in mind when talking about this: One, that the society needs these street vendors to sustain their livelihood - be it a fruit/vegetable vendor, laundry and ironing services, cobblers, and so on.
And the vice versa is also true for all these vendors rely on customers for their livelihood. Two, if a street vendor is not situated in an ideal location, then it causes problems in movement - disrupting people walking on footpaths. Overall, there is an urgent need to balance this situation out.”
MCD and Delhi Police taking unwarranted advantage of the situation; extorting outrageous amounts of money from the vendors: Saurabh Bhardwaj
Speaking about the incessant extortion by the MCD and the police, Shri Saurabh Bhardwaj said, “Currently, the corrupt officers of the MCD and the Delhi Police are shamelessly exploiting this situation. If you speak to any rickshaw driver or street vendor in Delhi, they will tell you that a monthly total of Rs. 500 is taken from them by a police officer, and another 500 by an MCD inspector. In some places, the extorted sum amounts to Rs. 500 a month, in other places it’s Rs. 500 a week. And in some places both the MCD and the police even go as far as extorting a heavy sum of Rs. 2000 a day, depending on the market and locality. The looming threat of extortion is always there from both the MCD and the police, because for vendors - if either isn’t paid, they will easily shut down their business. And these exorbitant ‘vasooli’ amounts aren’t paid by the street vendor, but you - the customers.”
Delhi Government to introduce a highly progressive policy to identify all vendors and help them conduct business without disruption: Saurabh Bhardwaj
Introducing the Delhi Government’s plans to tackle this problem, he said, “Hence, the Delhi Government is working on some highly progressive policies to address the situation and put a stop to this daily extortion by the MCD and the police. Under this, all street vendors are being identified through Vending Committees. Work is being done to estimate the number and kinds of vendors all over Delhi, and of the stallages they are charged. The Delhi Government is working on ideal locations for these vendors to continue their business without disrupting traffic or footpath movement, or taking up space on someone else’s property, and to peacefully conduct their sales without any extortion by the MCD or the police. This will benefit both the vendors as well as the customers.”
Will end reckless corruption by the MCD and the police as soon as AAP comes to power in the MCD: Saurabh Bhardwaj
He further added, “Moreover, the Aam Aadmi Party promises that as soon as it comes to power in the MCD, we will identify vending zones for street vendors so that even RWAs and market associations don’t encounter any troubles with them. We will introduce a systematic way for the vendors’ trade to flourish without clashing with any other organisations or activities. A separate zone will be provided so that both problems of disrupting and being disrupted can be solved, and we can put an end to the reckless corruption at the hands of the MCD and the police.”
Surveys have identified 71,371 street vendors throughout Delhi; remainder of vendors can register themselves by 7th December 2021: Saurabh Bhardwaj
Shri Saurabh Bhardwaj continued, “I would like to share that surveys are being conducted by the Delhi Government’s town vending committees, the deadline for which has been extended from 30th September 2021 to 7th December 2021 to include more vendors who had returned to their homes due to Covid and are setting up their businesses again in the city. After surveying and registering all the vendors, elections will be conducted among them and vending committees will be established according to the various zones throughout Delhi. Following this, the procedure of allocating zones to respective street vendors will be commenced. Through the survey so far, i.e., 30th September 2021, the South Delhi Municipal Corporation has identified 23,951 vendors, North MCD has identified 27,819 vendors, East MCD has identified 19,577 vendors - which amounts to a total of 71,371 street vendors.”
BJP’s ‘Jhuggi Samman Yatra’ program futile if its councilors don’t stop extorting money from street vendors - this will be the biggest honor: Saurabh Bhardwaj
Calling out BJP’s empty programs, he concluded, “The BJP has a program called ‘Jhuggi Samman Yatra’ - which itself is hypocritical as they called it ‘jhuggi’ (slum) and then added ‘samman’ (respect). The actual respect in this ‘Jhuggi Samman Yatra’ would be if you tell your MCD councillors to put a stop to their ‘hafta/vasooli’ or extortion for a month - that in itself would amount to respect for the vendors. At least the people would feel heard by their own councillors. However, I can say with absolute certainty, that forget one month, the MCD will not halt its extortions for even a week. And so through our new policy, we will end this bribery, get rid of the inconvenience faced by RWAs, citizens, and people on the road and completely eliminate corruption from this mechanism. Hence, for the MCD and for all the people of Delhi, we have put forth an extremely progressive agenda and that be it rich, poor, middle or lower middle class - each and every person living in Delhi will benefit from this initiative.”