Wholesale traders elated over getting back to business in Gandhi Market

Corporation workers cleaning Gandhi market in Tiruchi on Friday.  


Vendors affiliated to Tiruchi Gandhi Market All Kinds of Wholesale And Retail Traders’ Association were elated over getting back to business after a lengthy gap, after the Madurai Bench of Madras High Court vacated an interim order, paving way for its functioning temporarily.

Traders of all items, including vegetables, fruits, utensils gathered on Friday morning to celebrate the opening of the market. The vendors will start operating out of the Gandhi Market from 7 a.m. on Saturday, while the temporary market at G- Corner will be shut after Friday night's sales, official sources said.

“The civic body has instructed us to follow COVID-19 protocol, including maintaining personal distance, providing sanitizers to workers and ensuring that the vendors and customers wear facemasks at all times,” a vendor said.

Ve. Govindarajulu, President, Tiruchi Gandhi Market All Kinds of Wholesale And Retail Traders Association, said that the Madurai Bench had asked all stakeholders, including the vendors to file a response.

"Our lawyers will make a note of all our inconveniences and complaints with the Kallikudi market. That will be filed before the court," he said.

Claiming there are over 2,000 vendors at Gandhi market, he said only 300 shops have been allotted in the new market at Kallikudi.

According to the vendors, the Kallikudi market was not constructed in consultation with their needs. "Even at the Koyambedu Market, two floors were not constructed for vendors for practical reasons. How can we load and unload our goods every day?" Mr. Govindarajulu wondered. The market, constructed 16 km away from the city on a highway poses several risks, he added. "You have to turn from the Madurai highway directly into the market. With large goods carriers ferrying in and out of the market, our lives, and the lives of travellers on the highway would be at risk," he said.

Even though the Gandhi Market is decades old, there are at least 11 exit routes, in case of an emergency while the Kallikudi market only has two, Mr. Govindarajulu said.

Of the 830 shops constructed in the new market complex, 351 are already occupied by Farmers Producers Groups and Farmers Producers Organisations. "What about the livelihoods of the thousands of vendors who have not been allotted shops?" he asked.

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Printable version | Jan 19, 2021 6:16:30 AM |

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