New Delhi: Observing that "governments at
all levels" have failed to provide a congenial and harassment-
free environment to street vendors, Urban Poverty Alleviation
Minister Kumari Selja today said the Centre has proposed a
scheme in the 12th Five Year Plan to facilitate street
Addressing a workshop on National Consultation on Central
Law on Street Vending, Selja underlined that street vending
provides a source of self-employment and is a measure to check
Noting the importance of enabling street vendors to
pursue their livelihood in congenial and harassment-free
atmosphere, she said, "I am constrained to observe that the
governments at all levels have failed to provide such an
atmosphere to them to conduct their business."
The street vendors have a constitutional right to pursue
their occupation without any detriment to the interests of
general public, she said.
For uplifting of street vendors, Selja said, the Housing
and Urban Poverty Alleviation Ministry had brought out a
National Policy on Urban Street Vendors in 2009.
"The policy recognises that practising any profession or
pursuing any occupation, trade or business is a right of every
citizen and it cannot be denied to street vendors," she said,
adding that they face problems as the cities don`t have
designated space for street vending or hawking.
The policy also advocates that the local authorities
promote week-end markets and night bazaars in public grounds,
parade grounds or areas meant for religious festivals to
facilitate street vending.
On the proposed scheme in 12th Five Year Plan, she said,
"It proposes to support development of vendor markets and
vending zones, conducting survey and demarcation of vending
spaces, provision of amenities, registration of street
vendors, credit access and skills training."
Meanwhile, national coordinator of National Association
of Street Vendors of India (NASVI) Arbind Singh said the
proposed law should override the existing legislations such as
the Municipal Acts, Police Acts and Indian Railways Act which
are "adversely" impacting the street vendors.
Maintaining that the central law must be comprehensive
and effective in ensuring a secured and dignified livelihood
to street vendors, he pitched for strengthening and protecting
weekly markets, robust grievance redressal mechanism and
provisions of financial inclusion of street vendors.