Thursday June 13, 2024

Commercial areas turn into hub of encroachments

May 20, 2024
This image shows street vendors selling various items on a footpath. — APP/File
This image shows street vendors selling various items on a footpath. — APP/File

Rawalpindi:Contrary to the policy of the Punjab government and strict direction from the country’s Superior Courts, the city managers have turned a blind eye to the ever-increasing encroachments in the city.

All major markets and city bazaars are developing with encroachments and traffic congestion each day. The areas of Raja Bazaar, Narankari Bazaar, Barra Bazaar, Dalgaran Bazaar, Mochi Bazaar, Namak Mandi Bazaar, Lal Haveli Bazaar, Sarafa Bazaar, Moti Bazaar, Iqbal Road, Commercial Market, Sadiqabad Bazaar, Muslim Town Bazaar, Khayaban Sir Syed Bazaar, Adiala Road Bazaars, and several other localities were bursting with encroachment.

Group leader Traders Association Commercial Market Rizwan Sunny told this agency that the area of commercial had turned into an encroachment hub with the nexus of Municipal Corporation officials and parking contractors.

He said push-up carts, Chips, Soda, Juice, hangers and Chat vendors were ruling the commercial market area and businessmen and vehicle movers were hostages in front of them.

General Secretary Anjuman-Tajraan Rawalpindi Tahir Taj Bhatti said that illegal encroachments on every city road were the leading cause of disturbing business activities in the city areas.

He urged the Rawalpindi administration to widen the entrance of interior city bazaars including Talwara Bazaar, Trunk Bazaar, Bohr Bazar, Sabzi Mandi, Moti Bazaar and other areas for the smooth flow of traffic.

Tahir added that due to a lack of parking space and encroachments in many markets of downtown areas, traders were losing customers and distances of minutes was being covered in hours due to acute road encroachments and traffic stuck ups. He said it had become challenging for foot travellers to move into the city’s commercial areas due to heavy traffic jams and increasing encroachments.

Rani, a housewife from the Akal Garh area, said that she had planned to buy garments for my kids from Moti Bazar but was going back home as I could not move with my family due to a packed rush.

When contacted, an official source in the Municipal Corporation Rawalpindi said that a grand anti-encroachment drive had been started in the city areas on the instruction of Commissioner Rawalpindi Division Engineer Aamir Khattak for eliminating encroachments.