J. Venkatesan

Issues relating to hawking policy adjourned

NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Wednesday clarified that it had not imposed any ban on cooking of roadside food or eatables in the Capital.

During the course of hearing of the new hawking policy, a Bench of Justice B.P. Singh and Justice H.S. Bedi told counsel for the parties, "We have been reading recently in the press and media that Delhi's eating habits have been prevented by us. We have not imposed any such ban on enjoying chholey-bhature or delicacies. What we have said is for preparation of healthy and hygienic food the MCD can create proper facilities. Nobody is preventing you (MCD) from having good food courts. We are not saying don't eat chholey. Eat chholey, but there must be facilities like water, etc."

The Bench adjourned to April 3 the issues relating to the MCD's new hawking policy asking the parties concerned to file their response to the policy.

In its hawking policy submitted to the Court, the MCD said it would require the help of the Delhi police to implement the tehbazari scheme for grant of vending rights.

The scheme stated that the Ward Vending Committees had determined squatting, non-squatting and hawking and non-hawking zones on the basis of availability of open spaces and width of roads or footpaths without compromising with free flow of pedestrians and vehicular traffic.

Allotment of sites for squatting and grant of hawking rights would be made on the basis of individual applications received from the general public, the scheme said. The number of vending sites in a particular zone will not exceed 2.5 per cent of the total population of that zone.

The tehbazari sites would remain the property of the civic body. However, mutation would be allowed in case of death or permanent insanity of the allottees. The size of a tehbazari site would be six-by-four-feet and a standard design would be evolved for covering them, and individual tehbazari holders would have to bear the costs for it, the scheme said.

However, it clarified that the tehbazari holders would not be allowed to raise pucca structures.

The tehbazari allottees would not be allowed to cook food but they could sell properly packed food items, the scheme clarified.