All India Trade Union Congress, Manipur State Committee (AITUC-MSC) on Thursday submitted a memorandum to the chief minister and governor, appealing for their intervention in the removal of the street vendors by the state government.
In the memorandum, AITUC-MSC appealed for the intervention of the authorities in regard to the process of removing of the street vendors and the “prevailing miserable failure of the state government to address the grievances and untold sufferings of the street vendors in the state.”
The main causes for the growth of street vending are lack of profitable and secure employment in the formal sector, lack of good market system in the hill and rural areas, and low economic condition of the public as well as the low skills and small financial input requirements of street vending, it stated.
AITUC-MSC accused the state police and the Imphal municipal corporation authorities for harassing and acting inhumanly against the street vendors who are mostly women.
“The women street vendors are exposed to rain and sun while the police personnel would kick and throw their goods away on the streets, thereby amounting to torture and harassment to the vendors,” it further added.
It mentioned that in view of the Street Vendors (Protection of Livelihood and Regulation of Street Vending) Act 2014, all existing street vendors would be entitled to protection against such eviction and relocation.
The government authorities are supposed to constitute a Town Vending Committee according to the Manipur Street Vendors (Protection of Livelihood and Regulation of Street Vending) Rules, 2016, it stated, adding that no Town Vending Committee has been constituted till date.
It further stated that “in order to give effect to the provisions of the provisions of the Street Vendors Act, 2014, the state government should frame a scheme under section 38 of the said Act within six months from the date of commencement of the Act, after due consultation with the local authority and the Town Vending Committee”. However, no such scheme has been framed by the state government till date in clear violation of the Act, it continued.
Thus, in order to safeguard the rights of the street vendors, the state government is required to constitute Town Vending Committee, frame a scheme under the Street Vendors (Protection of Livelihood and Regulation of Street Vending) Act 2014; identify the street vendors and issue of licence or identity cards, and identify ‘non-vending areas’ and ‘vending areas’, it read.
It suggested that the vacant space available in the 1st floor of Ima Market Khwairamband Bazaar may be allotted to the street vendors which would address the grievances of the street vendors.
It appealed for the process of removal of the street vendors by the state government to be stopped immediately, and urged the chief minister and governor to take up necessary action to address the immediate requirement of the street vendors of the state.