Retail outlets and weekly vegetable markets in residential colonies hit the vendors hard

Once a shoppers' paradise, Monda Market these days seems to be losing sheen. The usual hustle-bustle in the dingy lanes and by-lanes of this decades-old market is missing these days due to a drastic decline in turn out.

Shopkeepers bemoan the market not receiving even half the number of customers that it used to cater for few years ago and it has affected the livelihood of vendors here. Proliferation of retail vegetable outlets in almost every nook and corner of the twin cities as well as the popular weekly markets in colonies have led to the trickling down of the visitors.

Rare items

Customers come here only for commodities that are not usually easily available in other markets like grains, special flowers used for particular worship, herbal products and ingredients for making the traditional pickles, says a vendor, C. Madhusudhan.

Everything, right from needles to gold and silver ornaments, vegetables, clothes, fruits, flowers, grains and fancy items, are available here from dawn to night between the Secunderabad station stretch till the Subash Bazaar near Ramgopalpet police station.

Commodities required for celebrating any and every occasion as also special occasions are also sold.

For instance, the sacred and scarce ‘Bilvapatra' (trifoliate leaf) and ‘Ekabilvam' (single trifoliate leaf) offered to Lord Siva are also available here.

“These are not that easily available in other markets in the twin cities,” says a shop owner Ch. Rajesh Chander.

Owing to its proximity to the railway and bus stations, many from the neighbouring Ranga Reddy, Nalgonda, Mahabubnagar and Warangal districts prefer to buy articles during marriages and other family functions at this decades-old Monda Market.

No wonder it used to be packed to capacity till a few years ago and one could shop only by pushing and jostling to get even a toe-hold. “The situation has changed and the crowds have vanished,” sighs A. Krishnaveni of Rezimental Bazaar.

The market is said to have been established more than 100 years ago primarily to cater to the needs of British military requirements and gradually developed into one of the biggest markets of twin cities dealing with the sale of wholesale and retail items.

Monda Market Vendors Association president Talasani Shankar Yadav admits that retail outlets and weekly markets had hit the vendors hard and the marketing department have been apprised of the situation.

Lack of parking space

However, department officials say lack of proper amenities, including adequate parking, space was the main reason for people shunning the market. A few years ago, the GHMC has hired a private agency to prepare a project report to replace market with multi-storied complexes. But problems relating to rehabilitation of tenants has delayed its implementation, they point out.