Amaravathi shop vendors groping in the dark
By Express News Service - KOCHI
09th July 2012 08:51 AM
Even while Kochi claims to be the city with the most active night life in the state, one of the oldest markets of the city still runs on kerosene. The vendors of the Amaravathi Market has been demanding electricity connection for themselves for decades now, but even after several rounds of new governments and councillors all efforts to provide electricity connection here has gone in vain.
“The Corporation demands a sum of `30 per basket of fish or food that comes into the market. But when it comes to providing the electricity connection, the Corporation has been turning its back on us for decades,” said Treesa Varghese Netto, a fish vendor at the Amaravathi Market.
Two years back the Corporation had in fact released the funds for the electrification of the market and even the lining work had been completed. But due to the long delay in providing power, the lines rusted and became unusable. Now the Corporation has reinstated the electricity lines, but owing to previous experience, the vendors are not optimistic about the new developments.
“In a few months, the reinstated lines too will get rusted and we will be forced to continue for ever with these Kerosene lamps,” says Tresya P S Fernandez, a shop vendor in the market. “You need one litre of Kerosene every three days to light the two Kerosene lamps for each stall. Since the amount you get as ration hardly provides you with so much of Kerosene, every other day you have to buy it from the market,” says Tresya. The reduction in the amount of Kerosene and the move to provide the money for the Kerosene through banks have raised serious concerns from the residents here.
Meanwhile the councillor here says that the inordinate delays were largely owing to the fact that the market area was not under the Corporation. “We were hoping to do the renovation of the dilapidated building of the market and provide electricity along with it. But that got delayed because the land is not under Corporation and we were unable to buy the land for ourselves. But owing to the delay, we have initiated steps to provide electricity anyway even if the renovation takes more time. The estimate has been taken, the funds will be released at the latest”, said the Amaravathi Councillor, P S Rajam.
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