Infuriated shopkeepers of Indirapuram hit the streets on Friday to demonstrate their anger against the sealing drive, carried out by the Ghaziabad Development Authority, snatching away bread and butter of 30 shop owners.
Gathered in large numbers, the shopkeepers rallied around Mangal Chowk in Niti Khand I and shouted slogans against the civic body and state government, led by Bharatiya Janata Party.
“Many of us are operating since 1995. The administration charges us everything on commercial rates. Be it electricity, gas cylinders or the taxes. Where will we go,” asked Lalit Chauhan, a shopkeeper.
The agitated shopkeepers blamed the authority for acting under the pressure of the recent judgment pronounced by the Allahabad High Court.
The judgment came during the hearing of a petition filed by Federation of Apartments Owners Association, Ghaziabad to seize the commercial establishments, which are situated in residential area of Indirapuram. The plea asserted that commercial operations are hampering the peaceful life of citizens and creating traffic menace in the area as well.
Acting upon it, the court in its order, dated 24.10.2018, asked the GDA to file the counter of the petition and asked SSP, Ghaziabad to form a team to streamline the traffic and file a status report this month.
However, the order did not mention the sealing process. The sources within the GDA told City Spidey that the authority is under extreme pressure after the HC order.
GDA Vice Chairperson Kanchan Verma refuted the possibility of acting under pressure following court’s order. “This is our usual exercise,” she claimed.
Meanwhile, the chief of Vyapar Mandal, a representative body of commercial establishments in Indirapuram, met VC to resolve this conflict but no consensus was formed between both the parties.
“GDA told us that only those shops would be allowed which do not flout pollution norms such as dairy, sweets and stationery. Others will be sealed soon,” said Omveer Yadav, president of Vyapad Mandal.
VC also confirmed that shops such as welding, puncture, automobile repair and others, which create pollution, would be sealed off as well.
“For others, we have advised them to operate within a red line drawn at the distance of two feet from the shops by the authority. Encroachment beyond that will result in sealing,” she added.
Meanwhile, Yadav has called for a protest rally again on Saturday. He said the mandal is also contemplating to move HC against the GDA.
On Thursday, the Ghaziabad Development Authority carried out an anti-encroachment drive near Shakti Khand and Mangal Chowk and sealed 30 shops on the pretext of running commercial activities on the residential premises.
Over 5000 shops are running in the vicinity of Indirapuram, of which, 1492 have been served notices.
Indirapuram news / shopkeepers / protest / sealing drive / sealing / GDA