The civic body’s new Development Plan (DP), slated to be released in 2011, is generating fear in the minds of active citizens as areas reserved for municipal markets in the old DP have gradually been parceled over to private parties for years.
A Right to Information (RTI) application filed by activist Vidya Vaidya revealed that many such plots on the DP reserved for municipal markets have disappeared and, instead, commercial super markets have come up.
Similarly, reservation of open spaces for recreations grounds and playgrounds, sculptor’s studios, municipal primary schools and hospitals have also disappeared from the DP.
In 2006, General Arun Kumar Vaidya Nagar Rahawasi Sangh had won a case where the concerned authorities were asked to build municipal markets within two years.
“But no action has been taken either by the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) or Maharashtra Housing and Area Developmental Authority (Mhada) so far,” said Vaidya.
Raising an important point, another citizen activist asked, “Why is the new DP needed when the ward office allows places to get encroached? How will the new DP ensure that the plots reserved won’t disappear?”
Vaidya opined that there are many such municipal markets existing all over the city and suburbs that can be utilised to solve the hawking problem.
“Hawkers like the ones on Hill Road and Linking Road and vegetable vendors, especially who hawk wares that are not site specific, can be shifted to municipal markets to give dignity to their profession,” said Vaidya.
Original article here