Rot­ten meat seized in raid on ven­dors

7 Days in Dubai - - FRONT PAGE - By Is­mail Se­bug­waawo @is­mailsebu is­

Il­le­gal mar­kets where cheap meat and al­co­hol are sold to low-paid work­ers have been hit in a se­ries of raids by the author­i­ties.

Po­lice and mu­nic­i­pal of­fi­cials shut down at least two mar­kets in Abu Dhabi and Dubai at the week­end, of­fi­cials said yes­ter­day.

The ‘Bengali Bazaar’ in Abu Dhabi’s Musaf­fah area was cleared out and 11 peo­ple were ar­rested. Some 72 tonnes of goods were con­fis­cated from stalls.

Mean­while, in Dubai, 35 tonnes of meat, some of it stored in dirty tar­pau­lins, were seized in the Muhais­nah area.

Abu Dhabi Mu­nic­i­pal­ity said it moved on the Musuf­fah mar­ket on Thurs­day night, when ven­dors set up stalls.

The mar­ket stretched for some 500 me­tres in In­dus­trial Area 11.

Last Mon­day, 7DAYS re­ported that the slum mar­ket had re­lo­cated af­ter sim­i­lar sweeps in May of last year.

On Thurs­day, tonnes of fruit and veg­eta­bles, meat, slaugh­tered an­i­mals, live birds, clothes and shoes, blan­kets, elec­tri­cal prod­ucts and chil­dren toys were seized.

The mu­nic­i­pal­ity also said il­le­gal to­bacco, such as pan and niswar and cooked food items kept in the hot sun were seized. Peo­ple in­volved in gam­bling and other il­le­gal ac­tiv­i­ties were also caught and gam­bling ta­bles were con­fis­cated. Some ven­dors were hit with fines, though the mu­nic­i­pal­ity did not state how much th­ese were. “The crack­down is part of a cam­paign of pro­grammes or­gan­ised by Abu Dhabi Mu­nic­i­pal­ity, with the aim of main­tain­ing the civilised ap­pear­ance of cities and re­mov­ing things that de­form the pub­lic im­age,” a mu­nic­i­pal of­fi­cial said. “The cam­paigns also aim to pro­tect the health and safety of peo­ple from the dan­gers of prod­ucts that are il­le­gally dis­played for sale and un­der di­rect sun­light by un­li­censed street ven­dors.” Last week, ven­dors told 7DAYS they are forced to sell goods on their Fri­day off to sup­ple­ment their in­comes. One Bangladeshi ven­dor, No­ordin Khalid, who was sell­ing fruits and veg­eta­bles, said he and many oth­ers earn as lit­tle as Dhs800 per month.

“So I come here every Fri­day to make an ex­tra in­come through sell­ing fruits and veg­eta­bles to labour­ers,” he said at the time. He said he made be­tween Dhs100 to Dhs200 from sell­ing cheap veg­eta­bles.

Last May, the orig­i­nal mar­ket was raided on a Thurs­day night as ven­dors set up their stalls for the fol­low­ing day.

Of­fi­cials said work­ers on low wages are tempted to risk buy­ing meat in such con­di­tions, but should avoid them for the sake of their health.

DIRTY: Dubai Mu­nic­i­pal­ity said meat and poul­try was stored in tar­pau­lins in hot tem­per­a­tures

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