In a novel protest against the Mormugao Municipal Council’s (MMC) failure to stop fish wholesalers and roadside vendors in the city, Vasco fish market vendors on Wednesday morning began selling fish outside the MMC building premises.
While their protest lasted for a few hours, the MMC tried to seal the shops of wholesalers and persuaded vendors to vacate the area outside the MMC premises and return to the temporary market premises, but the vendors refused to budge.
It was only after the police assured to act against the roadside fish vendors and wholesalers, that the strike was called off and fish vendors went back to the market premises.
Speaking to reporters, fish vendor leader Custodio D'Souza said the MMC had failed to act on the wholesale fish market and roadside vendors.
"Everyone knows about the issue and vendors have been demanding over the years that illegal sale of fish must be stopped, but the MMC has failed to do so despite repeated requests,” D’Souza said.
“Vasco MLA Krishna Salkar and his team had arrived along with the chief officer to meet us and had requested us to vacate our old fish market and allow them to build a new fish market.”
D’Souza said they had agreed to do so after an assurance by the MLA that the illegal sale of fish in the wholesale or by roadside vendors would be stopped.
“Today, the new market complex is almost ready but the illegal sale of fish has not stopped causing a lot of issues to the fish market vendors who have no business at all through the day.”
“We had warned that we will protest and sell fish outside the MMC if the illegal sale of fish did not stop and we will not move from here till our issues are resolved and the wholesale shops are sealed.”
“The MMC carries a drive and the sale of fish is stopped but the sale resumes after the MMC office is closed and we will not allow this because we need a permanent solution," D'Souza added.
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