Regardless of finishing the identification work of the street vendors, the newly constructed Atal Smriti Vendors Market lies non-operational till date.
The shifting process of the street vendors at this prime site was supposed to get accomplished in December 2018. However, even after the formal announcement by Mayor Asha Lakra to start the operation of the vendors market from February 11, the RMC officials appear in quandary.
According to the officials, the Civic Body is yet to rope in a competent operation and maintenance (O&M) agency for the vendors’ market. As per the RMC record, over 300 odd street vendors have been allotted shops there.
“Requisition letters of 220 street vendors have been rejected. After addressing the claims and objections, in the first phase, nearly 300 vendors will be settled inside the marketing complex. The tentative date is yet to be announced. Attempts are being made to complete the settlement process by February end,” said RMC Deputy Municipal Commissioner, Sanjay Kumar.
In the first survey as many as 660 vendors were added in the list prepared by RMC. A number of objections were entertained as it was found that the actual number of the street vendors having valid documents is 541. The resurvey was completed on November 1. Besides the resurvey, the documents of the street vendors have been verified several times, considering the reservation policy.
During the inauguration of the market on November 16, 2018, it was announced that 127 street vendors will be rehabilitated immediately. However, taking into consideration the intervention of the members of Town Vending Committee (TVC), the shifting process was kept on hold. The vendors’ market has a capacity of accommodating 472 street vendors.
Meanwhile, Lakra too admitted that after ensuring all arrangements at the Vendors’ Market, the major stumbling block is in hiring a competent organisation for the O&M of the marketing complex. “Earlier, we considered starting the vendors’ market from February 11, but due to do this major technical glitch, the shifting process is getting delayed. The tender was floated recently and some private agencies have come forward. Soon, the final date will be announced,” she said.
The building (G+5) that cover a carpet area of 2,94,240 sq. feet with basements, a banquet hall, cafeteria, 23 offices, 472 kiosks and 108 shops is the first and the biggest Vendors Market of the State with all State-of-the- Art facilities.
Constructed at a cost of Rs. 54 crore, the vendors’ market has advance facilities ranging from CCTV cameras, fire extinguishers, public announcement systems, advance parking service for better crowd management.
Around 36,831 street vendors have been identified from across Jharkhand, out of which 5,901 street vendors are from Ranchi. Around16, 141 Identity (ID) cards have been distributed among the street vendors across the State while 238 street vendors have been linked with various social service schemes.