Fisherwomen have no place to sell due to delay in the opening of Senji Salai fish market

Anyone who had driven down Senji Salai would have noticed a group of fisherwomen sitting beside makeshift wooden platforms and selling their wares. These women have been using their current location waiting for the completion of the Fish Market building.

“We have to contend with selling in the outdoors, with buses, cars and two-wheelers depositing dust on the fish. Even the customers barely have any space to stand and buy, with the constant stream of traffic. We have been asking the government repeatedly to hand over the fish market, but although the building looks complete and painted, there have been no signs of handing it over,” one of the fisherwomen said.

They were supposed to move in to the building around a year ago, but every time they approach the government to ask, they are told that the building has not yet been completed. They are forced to sell on the roadside amidst pollution. When it rains, even the vegetable markets are forced to close down, she said.

The Senji Salai fish market building is being constructed by the Project Implementation Agency (PIA) and will be handed over to the Puducherry Municipality for maintenance.

According to an official of the municipality, they were still waiting for the handover from the PIA, after which they would officially open the building.

Sources in the government told The-Hindu that they had received electricity connection for the building only a week ago. The work was almost complete and was ready for handover to the municipality.

The PIA was expected to hand over the building in the next week or so. The problem was, the municipality would need sufficient funds in order to maintain the fish market, since it would require a lot of cleaning and extensive maintenance.