Protesting police action, the vendors sought an alternate place to put up their stalls.

Displaced by pedestrian project fruit vendors around Charminar stage protestImage: Facebook
news Protest Tuesday, February 20, 2018 - 08:19

The ongoing Charminar Pedestrianisation Project (CPP) has hit the business of several fruit vendors around the historic monument in Hyderabad, as a protest was held on Monday.

Protesting against the 'high-handedness' of the traffic police, fruit vendors led by the National Hawkers Federation (NHF) sought an alternate place to put up their stalls.

“The business of more than 300 fruit vendors have taken a hit due to the Charminar Pedestrianisation work. Now, traffic police’s action against vendors has become a matter of concern. They are always considered a hurdle in traffic flow through the police don’t take note of the increasing number of vehicles,’’ NHF working president Mir Inayath Ali Baqri was quoted as saying.

Monday's protest came after a day of escalated tension on Sunday night, when the police instructed the fruit vendors to shift their stalls out of the way.

Even as this resulted in a heated exchange of words, the local corporator of the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) and Charminar MLA Syed Ahmed Pasha Quadri reached the spot to talk to the vendors.

After speaking to the project contractor, the vendors and the traffic police, the legislator managed to postpone the shifting temporarily. The MLA also assured the hawkers that an alternate place would be identified for them, in view of the pedestrian project.

Earlier this month, alleging harassment by the Hyderabad Traffic Police, several share autorickshaw drivers from the old city area highlighted their woes to reporters.

Due to the ongoing Charminar Pedestrianisation Project (CPP), they were pushed back to Shalibanda. Citing traffic issues, they were again pushed further back and asked not to enter the Falaknuma bridge. Soon, they were made to pick up passengers near the Chandrayangutta flyover, the drivers said.

According to reports, the CPP aims to pedestrianise a radius of 220 metres around Charminar, by diverting vehicular traffic through the Inner Ring Road (IRR) and the Outer Ring Road (ORR).

Meanwhile, the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) is also busy carrying out repair and conservation works on the monument and its pillars itself.