You may no longer get your favourite anda bhurji at some of the city's liveliest places by night. The traffic police and the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) have decided to embark on a demolition drive against illegal hawkers at the Swargate bus depot and the Pune and Shivajinagar railway stations.
Hungry kya? Anda bhurji vendors do brisk business at the Pune railway
station at night. file pic
The decision was taken at the latest traffic coordination meeting between the two agencies, after the traffic police raised the issue of crowding at these places. The police will have dedicated teams from the PMC with them and the drive will be conducted from 4 pm to 10 pm. Officials said the drive will begin in a few days.
There have been such drives in the past, but rarely have they shown long-term results. PMC officials point to the lack of manpower to explain why such drives are rarely sustained for any length of time to be effective. "We highlighted the problem of limited manpower, but now we will surely keep the forthcoming demolition drives going," said an official, requesting anonymity.
Another official, who also spoke on the condition of anonymity, said the traffic police had pointed out to the PMC the massive proliferation of hawkers at places that remain alive even at night in the city, particularly the Swargate bus depot and the Pune station.
Chief Encroachment Officer Ramesh Shelar said the drive would start after receiving intimation from the traffic police. "Encroachment officials will have a vehicle from the local ward offices at their disposal. Traffic police inspectors have been given ward officials' numbers and can call them anytime. I will oversee the overall progress initially," said Shelar. Offenders will either be booked or fined for encroachment, depending on the severity of the offence.