The Madras High Court on Thursday directed the Chennai Corporation to remove unauthorised bunk shops within four months.

The First Bench, comprising Acting Chief Justice V.K. Agrawal and Justice N. Paul Vasanthakumar, passed the order while disposing of a writ petition.

Earlier, passing an interim order on a petition by K.R. Ramaswamy alias ‘Traffic’ Ramaswamy, the court had directed the corporation to file an affidavit on Thursday on the time required to remove such bunk shops. It had also directed the corporation to submit a report regarding the action taken till date after the bunk shop committee proceedings wherein the Commissioner had instructed all zonal officers to enumerate the bunk shops in their jurisdiction.

In an affidavit, the corporation Commissioner, Vikram Kapur, said the civic body was “taking action to remove the unauthorised bunk shops after ascertaining the list of bunk shops located in zones.” Hence, it needed time. It had already started implementing court orders. The differently-abled had been instructed to remove their shops on their own, failing which the corporation would take action. This operation would take a minimum of four months for completion.

Earlier, following court orders, based on the committee’s recommendations, the Commissioner had passed an order that bunk stalls were permanent encroachments on footpaths, roads and other public places, which were a hindrance to public and traffic. They may be given preference in the allocation of corporation shops when they were being auctioned for allotment by permitting them to participate in auctions (maximum three times) without any security deposit and other conditions being the same. The differently abled bunk shop owners could avail themselves of reservation in getting allotment.

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