Major markets in Delhi will remain closed today. This is against the ongoing sealing drive against properties which are allegedly in violation of municipal norms. Prominent markets such as South Extension I and II, Greater Kailash I and II, Green Park, Defence Colony, Hauz Khas will remain shut on Friday.
A few days ago, AAP legislators had raised the issue in Delhi assembly. Meanwhile, AAP workers and traders affiliated to the party had also taken out a march against the sealing drive from its headquarters at Rouse Avenue near central Delhi’s ITO. The sealing drive, which started last month, have been undertaken by the BJP-controlled civic bodies on the instruction of a Supreme Court-appointed monitoring committee.
More than 50 commercial units in the posh Defence Colony Market were sealed on December 22 for “not depositing” conversions charges as per provisions in the city’s Master Plan 2021. Subsequently, besides South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SDMC), north Delhi corporation and the New Delhi Municipal Council also sealed several properties in areas falling under their jurisdiction. Action is being also taken against commercial properties for encroachments or illegal constructions
“We are protesting against the sealing drive because despite paying conversion charges, making payment to get additional floor area ratio approved, our properties are being sealed. The whole of Delhi has encroachments and we are ready to pay fine but instead of giving a solution, our businesses are being made to suffer,” Rajender Malik, president of the Defence Colony Traders’ Association, said.
“We will keep our shops closed and hold a peaceful protest around 11 am. We want to send the message that we have been doing our business peacefully. We pay our taxes and if the authorities think we have not followed rules, they can sit with us and tell us what needs to be done. But sealing of any shop will badly affect the business,” Anil Aggarwal, member of the traders’ association, said.