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Protest to press for rights of evicted hawkers

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157 users have liked.
21 Oct 2010 11:00
Asia/Calcutta
Urban DevelopmentGovernance

Dear All,

As you may be aware, since the last few months, street vendors have been getting evicted from different parts of Bangalore .

Vendors have been evicted from Shivajinagar, Jayanagar, Gandhinagar etc.  Three months ago around 350 vendors were evicted in Shivajinagar. These are people who had been conducting their businesses at that place since 20-30 years. Only 120 of them have been given alternate place to vend (and that too at a place where there is not much business!) . The rest have been left to fend for themselves.

Similar is the case in other areas as well.

All this is in violation of the National Urban Street Vendors Policy 2009 (attached) which explicitly states -' The right to carry on trade or business mentioned in Article 19(1) g of the Constitution, on street pavements, if properly regulated cannot be denied on the ground that the streets are meant exclusively for passing or re-passing and no other use.” (emphasis mine)

HEnce, in order to ensure that the rights of street vendors are met and that they are given back their original place of business, a city wide joint campaign of several groups of vendors, organizations and indivdiuals has been launched - Beedhi Vyaaparigala Hakkotaya Andolana . As a first part of that campaign, we will have a protest march from Russel Market Chowk to the BBMP head office at 11am on Thursday, 21 October. Please see the details below. Please do participate in the march and please also pass on the message to friends and family.

Thanks,
Vinay.


 

Beedhi Vyaaparigala Hakkotaya Andolana

A city level campaign of Street Hawkers, Dalits, Human Rights Activists, Social and Progressive Organizations

End our evictions. They are unconstitutional and contrary to the National Street Vendors Policy

 

Value our contributions to the society. Respect our fundamental rights. We demand legal cover and social security

 

Thursday, Oct 21 , 11am

Rally from Russell Market Chowk to BBMP Head Office

 

The past several months have seen the BBMP, the police and Muzrai departments undertake an aggressive and continuous exercise to forcibly evict us from the streets and pavements of Shivajinagar, Jayanagar, Ulsoor and Gandhinagar without any prior notice or allocation of any alternate location for our livelihood. Since then our families are struggling to survive - being left with absolutely no source of income. The reason given for our evictions is apparently that we are impeding flow of traffic and pedestrians or that our presence makes the city ugly.

 

We are among the poor people of this city – and vending on the street is our sole source of livelihood. From the vegetable vendor pushing his cart in localities, to the cobbler, the coconut vendor, the flower seller outside places of worship, the tea seller, the santhes, the general public depend on us for their daily needs and convenience. Urban areas in India started with Santhes or traditional street-side markets. Santhes have made cities, today the governments wants to shut down street vending and instead support malls.

Through our own initiative and enterprise we have worked very hard to live a life of dignity and respect. Like all others, we depend on our occupation to support ourselves, to educate our children, to take care our families and to protect ourselves to the best of our abilities. Instead of recognizing our worth and valuing us, we are being trampled upon. In Shivajinagar, within a hour, our efforts of 30 years were thrown out, our families turned destitute without a roof over our heads, our kids were forced to leave schools and today we are struggle to have a meal a day.

 

We are the citizens of this country, just as all the others – and the state government, the corporation, its elected members have the responsibility and the duty to respect our rights. Through our votes, we have given them the right to govern us justly. Instead of doing justice to our rights, we are increasingly seeing how our most basic rights are violated.

 

These actions of the BBMP are not just illegal and unconstitutional but also contrary to the National Policy on Urban Street Vendors, 2009 issued by the Government of India, which has been notified to provide for the protection of livelihood of urban street vendors.

 

The BBMP has to stop its illegal actions and do all that is just and necessary to protect the fundamental rights of the street hawkers. Thus, we demand:

 

  1. The evicted vendors should be restored back to the place they were evicted from and a space of 1mtr X 1mtr must be allotted to each vendor on the extreme side of the pavement to carry out their hawking. In case the BBMP does not restore our space back by October 28th, we will go ahead and resume our business from the morning of October 28th, at the place we were evicted from.

  2. The BBMP must reframe its Street Hawking scheme in accordance with the Constitution of India, the Supreme Court judgments and the National Policy on Urban Street Vendors 2009

  3. The BBMP must undertake not to carry out any evictions without following the due process of law. Atrocities against vendors should be stopped immediately. In the name of beautification, BBMP must not evict any vendors anywhere in Bangalore.

Comments

silkboard's picture

Where is the attachment

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You referred to National Urban Street Vendors Policy 2009. And why is a national policy dictating what state/city should do?

Public Agenda's picture

SB ji The GoI has a policy

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  1. Does the state have to work in a policy vacuum
  2. there is also a model law for Street Vending and following which GoAP have drafted one for themselves last month
  3. GoK would also have to do the same 

 Would you apply the same approach to JNNURM and the Metro? about why is a national policy .......?


Transmogrifier's picture

NUPoSV and comments on charter

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@ PA, it did appear to me that all sb was asking for was the missing attachment from the original post. ;)

Here's the actual policy itself (couldn't figure out how to add an attachment). Understandably, this charter is more concerned more with the urgent restoration of livelihoods for evicted vendors. However, it would be myopic to aim solely for the return of status-quo without addressing more non-urgent but important issues to consider.

The evicted vendors should be restored back to the place they were evicted from and a space of 1mtr X 1mtr must be allotted to each vendor on the extreme side of the pavement to carry out their hawking.

NUPoSV recognizes three kinds of vendors...stationary, peripatetic and mobile. Does this charter suggest  that vendors (of all these classes) get a designated 1m*1m space? If that is the case, who enforces pedestrian rights on (the limited number of) pavements that do adhere to IRC regulations (i.e. 1.5m min. width)?.

In the name of beautification, BBMP must not evict any vendors anywhere in Bangalore.

Agreed. But the policy that this charter endorses does talk about designating No-Vending and Restricted Vending zones.

The BBMP must reframe its Street Hawking scheme in accordance with the Constitution of India, the Supreme Court judgments and the National Policy on Urban Street Vendors 2009

It might help to include the actual articles of the Consitution (Articles 14, 38(2), 29(a), 39(b), 41 and 19(1)g) in addition to references to the actual SC judgement (Sodan Singh & others v/s NDMC). Along the same lines, mentioning the relevant steps that NPoUSV envisages (setting up of Town Vending Commitees; providing more facilities in exchange for fees) all go a long way to make a charter like this sound more defensible and less like rhetoric.

----

TM

idontspam's picture

Area level issue

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 In the name of beautification, BBMP must not evict any vendors anywhere in Bangalore.

Didnt read the policy but the above statement is not acceptable. Some areas do not want street vendors at all let them make the call. I definitely will bat for a time & space for them in my area. Though I get my veggies from street vendors exclusively, i believe they need designated times of operation & designated areas of opeartion. Decide time & space in conjunction with the RWA's and the hawkers. I still believe it is a local area level issue and may be a notification at the ward level should be sufficient, since cleaning also has to be done post the operation time by BBMP

silkboard's picture

Thansk TM

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87 users have liked.

Thanks TM for the link. Will read.

Agenda-ji, was only looking for attachment.

Hope the National Policy would have some answers, but how does one solve this core problem of allowing street vendors to flourish without hurting the interests of those who are paying for using the real estate for their retail outlets, or call it the conflict of seeing this as revenue leakage vs inclusive growth issue.

At some level, street vendors and hawkers represent state's subsidy to the middle class. The 'cost' benefit of no-rent, no byelaws, and not to mention not taxes to the city/state/center is passed mostly to the middle class.

Don't understand the issues well enough, if someone could enlighten us all :)

Naveen's picture

Hawkers demands absurd

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space of 1mtr X 1mtr must be allotted to each vendor on the extreme side of the pavement

This is meaningless since pavements are barely a metre wide in many areas from where they were evicted (ulsoor market, russel market, shivajinagar, etc). At ulsoor mkt, many make shift stalls had been obstructing pedestrians & overhanging onto the street/s.

I don't think BBMP has been high handed at all - hawkers, being secondary when compared with the primary objectives of the street, cannot demand "rights" over 1m x 1m for each of them !

RWAs /locals cannot be left entirely to decide on this either (some areas may not have RWAs at all). There has to be a state or city policy first, & locals given some participatory roles, but not total control. Arbitrariness can become a problem then as hawkers can demand space in one area based on the argument that other area/s have welcomed them.

idontspam's picture

Ward level only acceptable

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 Hawkers are allowed the world over from London to Malysia and far east. Streets over the weekends are reserved for them in the form of flea markets. Malleshwaram for me holds charm because of the 8th cross street market. There is no way I will let BBMP decide on hawkers for my area. I will only accept a ward level determination and am willing to go to court to stall any attempt by BBMP to determine without RWA/ward level consent. I am from ward 19 and am willing to join like minded groups planning a PIL on this. I would however want then restricted from 6 to 9 in the evenings only in my ward and to specific areas away from crowded junctions.

Sanjeev's picture

Need to have Zones for Hawker

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I agree with IDS as  mentioned,  its true all over the world this practice is followed and with Zones.

Like Sunday Bazar in Goa & Pondichearry is complete on the  roads.  BBMP should plan for these Zones and make clear marking about   No Hawaker Zones and timings  with days where they can operate.

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