| Menace of Hawkers
in DADAR .Can the Citizens do Nothing?
Article by Swati deshpande
We the residedents appeal MCGM ,to
see the plight of the DADAR residents ,
Our life has been made miserable by the
Hawkers in this area.They are now challenging the Citizens ? As they
have "managed" the local BMC & Police officials.
our ernest request to you all to bring back Mr. Chandrashekhar Rokde
D.M.C.in action. We residents are fed up,tired & frusteted,even
Shivsena people are now with them,it seems.
Hope you will something in this hour of CRISIS.
(Madhu Sawant) & others
shivaji Park ,DADAR ,Mumbai.
By Swati Deshpande/TNN
Mumbai: At Dadar, residents and traders alike are apprehensive that
the 3,000 hawkers who have encroached the road outside the station
are there to stay. Their fear stems from what they say is a shocking
suggestion made by the threemember court appointed committee on hawking
The committee headed by retired city court judge Arvind Shah, in its
report to the supreme court, sought a relaxation of the 150-metre
distance bar from railway stations, educational institutions, hospitals
and courts. The relaxation, it said would “help accommodate’’ more
hawkers “without causing too much disturbance to vehicular or pedestrian
traffic’’. The condition was first imposed by the apex court itself
in its landmark verdict on dealing with thousands of hawkers in the
The supreme court judgment of December 9, 2003, demarcating hawking
zones, has not yet been implemented and the city’s patience is wearing
thin. For traders in Dadar, the situation has “already worsened.’’
“We have not even been heard by the committee despite making at least
400 calls to its office,’’ said Sunil Shah, secretary of the Dadar
Merchant Association. Damji Savla, another member who has seen the
hawkers rise in number each year told TOI: “The police, BMC and the
government all lack the will. If a few hawkers are fined Rs 10,000
for release of seized goods as is the legal charge, it would act as
a deterrent to others. The hawkers know nothing will happen to them
if they grease a few palms.’’
Shah and other merchants, however, are not willing to sit quietly.
It’s not just that fewer people are stopping by at their stores, they
feel Dadar has lost its charm thanks to the hawkers. “The traffic
has gone for a toss and unhygienic conditions
mean people cannot shop leisurely.’’
Sample this, only two roads in the F/north ward has been listed as
hawking zones. But the five main roads, which are clearly non-hawking
zones, are overrun by hawkers jostling for space and spilling onto
and occupying one-third of the roads. At Chabildas Marg under Tilak
bridge, hawkers sit in three rows selling flowers and vegetables,
on Ranade Road, its clothes, veggies and other knicknacks, D’Silva
Road again has vegetable sellers, M C Jawale Road near Kabutar Khana
and N C Kelkar Marg are all hawking hangouts.
Meanwhile, the seven-story hawkers plaza built to accommodate around
1,500 hawkers has no takers. Only 10% of hawkers are licensed said
Savla and they usually sub-let their stalls to others. And though
the residents and traders praise the local ward officer they blame
the police and the local politicians for the “hopeless’’ situation
they are in.
Sena to the rescue?
The latest move to help hawkers work in a “regulated’’ manner comes
from Shiv Sainik Baban Chavan alias Rao, who runs the Shiv Sena-sponsored
Dadar Hawkers Association. He has distributed forms to hawkers with
a list of dos and don’ts that they need to follow. For instance the
hawkers have to agree to abide by all decisions taken on their behalf
by the Sena association. They ironically also agree not to encroach
the footpath or to obstruct the shops outside which they park themselves.
Most importantly the hawkers have to promise not to go against the
Sena-run organisation “ever’’. Many such forms are being distributed
right now and the Sainiks say this is only way the problem can be