Four mobile eateries, all with similar menus and reasonably priced, bustle with customers, at the border of the Raja Street-Sivaprakasam Street-Masilamani Street junction.
In a sight that has become common here, leftover food from these stalls is dumped on the road by the cooks, customers constantly urinate nearby and plastic waste is strewn all over.
Ironically, these mobile eateries are located just behind a Chennai Corporation ward office.
“Our windows are always shut because of the smell, since people urinate just outside our compound wall. Also, our drains have clogged up on several occasions due to the continued dumping of waste by these eateries,” said a resident of the area. Until February this year, there was only one eatery there. Over the last few months though, a few more have come up. On weekends, the situation is worse as several customers arrive in cars, parking them haphazardly around the junction, affecting the flow of traffic.
“Once, when my wife was terribly sick we couldn’t get out of the street, as a fleet of cars were parked at the junction,” said V. V. Damodaran (60), a resident of Raja Street. Soon after some residents complained to Corporation authorities, a few eateries’ owners ganged up with miscreants and threatened them, alleged several residents of the locality.
“Recently, when we approached Corporation Commissioner D. Karthikeyan, he promised action within 10 days. I hope some measures are taken to solve this problem at the earliest,” said R. Sridharan, president of the T. Nagar Residents’ Welfare Association.
Corporation officials indicated there was a proposal to evict eateries in many areas but it couldn’t be carried out unless they received an order from the Mayor. “All the shops will be removed in five days and we will see to it that such eateries don’t crop up in the future,” said V. Saravanan, councillor of the area.