PUNE: The Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) administration is facing political pressure to make 11 major roads of the city encroachment-free. Accordingly, Municipal Commissioner Shekhar Gaikwad has decided to call a meeting of political leaders, traffic police and has finalised the road map to achieve encroachment-free roads.
In the first week of January, the PMC Anti-Encroachment Department announced it would clear all encroachments from 11 major roads. The department initiated action. However, corporators and political parties started pressurising the administration to stop the action. Yet, the corporation continued its anti-encroachment drive.
In the last two weeks, the PMC removed 4,125 encroachments which included 32 stalls, 459 hand carts, 1,694 hawkers and 484 sheds. The department also sealed 30 shops and took action against 22 traders for running unauthorised businesses on roads.
Speaking to the media, Gaikwad said, “We have called a meeting of traffic police, PMC officials and political party leaders of PMC to discuss the issue of 11 encroachment-free roads. We are trying to make 11 major roads encroachment-free in the first phase. After that, we will decide on increasing the number of such roads.”
In 2007, the PMC administration had announced the hawkers policy, which covered 45 roads. Hawker-free roads without any hurdles have become a non-completed mission set by the PMC for more than a decade. The task has not been accomplished even after the PMC conducted anti-encroachment drives on a regular basis. Now, it has become an eyewash exercise.
In the hawkers’ policy, they decided to make 30 prime roads hawker-free zone in the first stage. There were three stages in the hawker-free zone. There were a total of 45 roads mentioned in the policy. But, as of today there is not a single road that turns into a hawker-free zone.
The department has given priority to FC Road, JM Road, Bajirao Road, Shivaji Road, Nagar Road, Sinhagad Road, Karve Road, Kumthekar Road, Laxmi Road, Shastri Road and Tilak Road.
In 2007, PMC had announced the hawkers policy, which covered 45 roads. Hawker-free roads without any hurdles have become a non-completed mission set by the PMC for more than a decade.