KOLHAPUR: Kolhapur Municipal Corporation (KMC) on Tuesday cleared encroachments on the road from Shivaji University to Government Polytechnic College.
KMC initiated a drive against illegal hoardings and roadside encroachments and started dismantling cabins and shops erected illegally. The road is an old national highway with heavy traffic. Encroachments were causing problems even for morning walkers, and many of the cabins and food stalls started recently. Food waste would be thrown on the roadside causing sanitation issues and a sharp increase in the number of stray animals. At night, with haphazard parking by visitors, there was an increased risk of accidents.
RK Jadhav, the deputy city engineer, said, “We removed 19 food stalls and cabins along the road. Also, the digital boards from Shivaji University to Rajaram College, Panjarpol area and Shahu Naka area have been removed. We asked fruit vendors sitting on the footpath to shift as they were coming in the way of pedestrians, who were forced to walk on the roads and risk accidents.”
KMC seized the carts and shut the cabins. Officials on the anti-encroachment drive are going to monitor these areas so those asked to move do not return. Hawkers associations have objected to the alleged displacement of street hawkers. KMC has claimed that only those who were operating illegally, or from cabins illegally erected, were affected. Hawkers who possess biometric cards issued after the survey of 2012 and from time to time by the estate department have not been affected, KMC officials said.