Bhayandar: After miserably failing to tackle the illegal hawker menace in the twin-city on the virtue of its own mechanism, the Mira Bhayandar Municipal Corporation (MBMC) recently roped a private manpower agency for the job.
However, despite spending Rs 57 lakh towards an unusually strange and controversial eviction contract, hawkers continue to mock at the civic administration as the private agency is under the scanner for its failure in getting rid of the tackling the menace which continues to assume alarming proportions.
The contract has saddled the municipal exchequer with a financial burden of Rs 19 lakh every month, envisaging deployment of a private workforce of 50 uniformed bouncers who armed with walkie talkies move around in vehicles including jeeps and tempos.
However, illegal hawkers continue dotting the 13 designated roads and pavement in the twin-city. It has been alleged that the agency which is hand in-glove with the collection agents is treating the menace with kids gloves exposing the self-contradictory move taken by the MBMC.
While civic chief Balaji Khatgaokar had maintained that the eviction contract was only a 3-month pilot project aimed at rehabilitating hawkers in upcoming municipal markets across the twin-city, an official from MBMC’s anti encroachment wing said, “Following complaints, we have directed the concerned agency to keep a proper tab on the illegalities.”
The MBMC has already included private bouncers into its brigade to accompany the civic teams in demolition drives.
While roads tagged as No Hawker Zones have remained only on paper, the glaring links between hawkers, politicians, contractors and civic personnel has become apparent.
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