New Delhi: Railways are seeking suggestions from stakeholders to formulate a holistic hawker policy for the public transporter.
"There is a need for a hawker policy which takes into consideration the interest of all stakeholders. The policy should aim at providing social justice to the hawkers and at the same time not lead to operational bottlenecks," said a senior Railway Ministry official.
Besides transporting passengers and goods, Railways also provide a means of living to many including hawkers.
"We have sought suggestions from all the stakeholders for drafting of a policy on hawking in Indian Railways which is holistic and addresses the concerns of all in an effective manner," he said.
Railways have invited suggestions at firstname.lastname@example.org by March 31, 2016.
"There are many licensed and unlicensed hawkers earning their livelihood because of railways.
"On the one hand these hawkers want more access to the railway premises and on the other hand, there are passenger associations which time and again raise the demand about regulating unauthorised hawking at stations and trains," the official said.
There are also complaints that many times these hawkers are seen selling prohibited items like tobacco and occupying spaces in railways stations, coaches and foot-over bridges which becomes a safety hazard and restricts movement of bonafide passengers.
So there is a requirement for firming up a policy taking into account all stakeholders to address the issue, he said.
Besides hawker policy, railways have also sought stakeholders' views on setting up of Rail Development Authority.