Commercial establishments that were shut down on Wednesday by the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) for alleged violation of zonal norms became a bone of contention between their owner and residents on Friday.
The residents alleged that many of them were reopened a day or two after they were sealed, following the intervention of C.V. Raman Nagar MLA S. Raghu. As many as 13 shops were closed on 9th Main, HAL 2nd Stage, by the civic body.
Srinivas R., president of Social Amenities Association, HAL 2nd Stage, said, “The MLA has violated the notice put by the BBMP by indiscriminately opening all 13 shops. These shops should get licence in order to continue their business.”
On the other hand, S.G. Aditya, secretary, Indiranagar Owners and Traders’ Welfare Association, said, “We agree with the residents that the wine shop in the building may have caused inconvenience, but the smaller shops cause no harm. We have been trying to reapply for licence since 2015, but the BBMP has not renewed it.” He said the MLA had told the residents and shop owners that he would call a public meeting to discuss the recent developments and invite suggestions from all stakeholders for solutions to the complaints of residents.
Mr. Raghu maintained that the shops were located on a road that was well above 40 feet in width, thereby making them legal. “After they approached me, we measured the road width and found it to be 45 ft. If they are in the wrong, let them be closed. The BBMP is leaving out much bigger establishments violating zonal regulations,” he said.
However, BBMP East zone Joint Commissioner Dr. Ashok said: “The BBMP had closed all the shops without any discrimination. The licence of the convenience shops in the location, which include those selling groceries and vegetables, will be renewed shortly. But the other shops which violate the norms will be removed.”