Mangaluru, May 10, 2017: Harassed city street vendors staged a dharna in front of the corporation on May 9, Tuesday. Protesting against MCC, Mangaluru City Corporation frequently evicting them, They sought alternative arrangements for street vending. Addressing the gathering there, J. Balakrishna Shetty, president of the Dakshina Kannada unit of Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU), said that street vending was an inseparable part of urban life.
He alleged that the key people in the MCC were trying to curb the rights of street vendors without making alternative arrangements for them. Sunil Kumar Bajal, honorary president, Dakshina Kannada District Street Vendors Association, said that the corporation has not renewed the identity cards issued to about 200 street vendors.
Though many other vendors have been waiting to get the identity cards, the civic body has not initiated any steps to issue them the cards. He said that the corporation has been projecting that the street vendors were responsible for traffic problems in the city. But it was not focussing on making builders who have allotted basement parking in multi-storey buildings to commercial shops, to remove the shops and reserve the basement only for parking. Though the corporation has created a vending zone near the State Bank of India bus terminus, it has not provided basic facilities for vendors there.
Vasantha Achari, State vice-president, CITU, said that street vendors have contributed to the development of the city and convenience of ordinary workers.