DRIVE AGAINST KALYAN HAWK­ERS TURNS FU­TILE

Hindustan Times ST (Mumbai) - Live - - THANE - Pad­mja Sinha

KALYAN: Two days af­ter tak­ing ac­tion against hawk­ers, they are back at sta­tion ar­eas in Kalyan and Dom­bivli.

Af­ter the hawk­ers were re­moved from Kalyan sky­walk, the com­muters were a happy lot. There was no ob­struc­tion and they had more space to walk. But, the com­fort was short-lived.

“Around 2 lakh peo­ple travel from Dom­bivli sta­tion ev­ery day. En­croach­ment by hawk­ers on the sky­walk makes the place con­gested and chaotic, es­pe­cially dur­ing peak hours. The sit­u­a­tion wors­ens when it rains,” said Swati Joshi, 35, a soft­ware en­gi­neer.

Com­muters said the traf­fic po­lice of­ten wash their hands of the prob­lem.

“When we com­plaint to the traf­fic cops about hawk­ers, they con­ve­niently say hawk­ers are the KDMC’s re­spon­si­bil­ity and that they can­not in­ter­fere,” said Anuja Patil, 25, a sec­ond-year engi­neer­ing stu­dent.

Com­muters have been com­plain­ing about the hawker men­ace on Kalyan sky­walk for years.

Ajit Mane, a city-based ac­tivist, said: “The cor­po­ra­tion has been tak­ing ac­tion against hawk­ers but it seems to be an eye-wash. They are hand in glove with the hawk­ers and that is why they are back with­out fear.”

“They must be get­ting sup­port from civic of­fi­cials or politi­cians for their busi­ness. A per­ma­nent so­lu­tion should be worked out ei­ther by al­lot­ting a hawk­ers’ zone or ded­i­cated place for them,” added Mane.

Mayor Ra­jen­dra Devlekar said they had re­ceived com­plaints that the hawk­ers are back on the pedes­trian zone.

“We have asked of­fi­cials to con­fis­cate their be­long­ings and keep a watch, es­pe­cially near sta­tion ar­eas, and take im­me­di­ate ac­tion. Pa­trolling would be done at th­ese ar­eas to avoid rush be­cause of hawk­ers dur­ing peak hours.”

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