Cabinet may discuss providing protection to street vendors
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The Union Cabinet is likely to discuss a legislation on Friday that seeks to protect over 10 million street vendors from getting harassed by authorities and help them earn a dignified livelihood. The legal framework seeks to legitimise their vending and relocating them to vending zones and pay for their maintenance.
The Street Vendors (Protection of Livelihood and Regulation of Street Vending) Bill, 2012, mooted by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation (HUPA) has its genesis in Sonia Gandhi-led National Advisory Council's (NAC) suggestion to enact a legislation for legitimising vending and ensuring adequate protection for them.
The Supreme Court too had earlier directed the government to convert its National Policy for Urban Street Vendors into a law.
The Bill aims to ensure compulsory registration for every street vendor aged over 18 by the respective Town Vending Committees (TVCs), which will specify the vending zone, the time limit and terms and conditions of use.
In these TVCs at least 40 per cent members will be drawn from the street vendors (one-third of which shall be women vendors). "The Bill is a satisfactory one as it seeks to legitimise the livelihood of the vendors. It is in sync with what we have been saying so far — to remove the vulnerability of vendors from the licence raj," NAC member Harsh Mander told The Indian Express.
They will be issued identity cards along with certificates for vending and will be asked to pay a fee to local municipalities.
The legislation also protects legitimate vendors from confiscation of goods by authorities, by allowing them to reclaim their goods. In addition, local authorities have been empowered to set up a permanent committee consisting of a person who has been a sub-judge or a judicial magistrate to redress vendors' grievances.
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