Street vendors in Manipur calls for extension of Street Vendors Act

Even after six year of enactment, the same Act is yet to be implemented in the state. "The non-implementation of the Act suppressed the rights of the street vendors."

A call for implementation of the Street Vendors Act in Manipur marked the celebration of 23rd foundation day of Roadside Vendors Welfare Association (RVWA) in Imphal on Tuesday.

The Street Vendors Act was enacted in 2014 to protect the urban street vendors and to regulate street vending activities.

Even after six year of enactment, the same Act is yet to be implemented in the state. “The non-implementation of the Act suppressed the rights of the street vendors”, observed Saktiman Gosh, general secretary of National Hawkers Federation who took part in today’s celebration. “There is a need to implement the Street Vendors Act not only to protect the rights of the street vendors but also pave the way for setting up of a town vending committee for registration of street vendors,” he added.

He then said that street vendors are playing an important role in the economy of a state and delay in the implementation of the Act not only suppressed the rights of the vendors but snatched the benefits which the street vendors can avail from various Central sponsored vendors’ welfare schemes.

He said that a street vendor can avail a loan of up to Rs 10,000 under one of the schemes initiated by the Central government recently.

Owing to unaware of such financial benefit schemes, many of the street vendors are yet to avail the benefit from it, he said. 

Speaking on the occasion, president of RVWA, Kshetri Tama said that the street vendors are suffering a lot since the starting of the COVID-19 induced lockdown.

Street vendors are banned from vending in Imphal city areas, she said and appealed to the government to start allowing vending in the Imphal by imposing appropriate SOPs.

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