Allow street vending to resume, Minister urged

The National Association of Street Vendors of India (NASVI) on Wednesday demanded that the Centre issue instructions allowing street vending to resume as States and municipalities were citing the lack of directions as a reason to not allow vending during the lockdown.

In a statement, NASVI national coordinator said the economic condition of street vendors and their families had become unbearable due to the COVID-19 pandemic and lockdown, and there was a need to immediately allow vending to resume.

In the letter to Union Minister for Housing and Urban Affairs Hardip Singh Puri, the association asked the government to issue a circular allowing all street vending with adequate safety measures, creation of vending zones and de-congesting markets through timings and odd-even formulas for opening shops.

“NASVI also urged them to convert the already announced credit scheme into a part direct cash transfer and part loan scheme. The letter drew the attention of the Minister to the sorry state of affairs in Delhi where the State government is not spelling out any policy on street vending which allows the police to interfere and trouble the street vendors,” the statement said.

It added that vending should be allowed with social distancing, use of masks and sanitisers, and that the Ministry could use funds under the National Urban Livelihood Mission for training street vendors.

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