Shimla, May 2
Finally, Ajivika Bhavan is ready. As many as 76 shops in this modern shopping complex will be handed over to the first set of beneficiaries on May 4. “As many as 76 Tibetan street vendors will be given shops in the complex on Wednesday. Subsequently, the other eligible vendors will also get the shops,” said Municipal Corporation Joint Commissioner Ajit Bhardwaj.
The five-storeyed complex, the work for which was awarded way back in 2015, has been constructed to rehabilitate the city’s street vendors on Cart Road near the Lift, one of the prime locations of the city. Apart from the 76 Tibetan vendors, the MC will provide shops to 70 other beneficiaries in a phased manner.
“The Tibetan vendors are being shifted first as the Tibetan market is in the sinking zone. Besides, the work for stabilizing the Ridge is also beginning,” said Bhardwaj.
The Tibetan market is located right below the Ridge. The complex, which was conceptualized under the previous Municipal Corporation headed by CPM’s Sanjay Chauhan, has been constructed at a cost of over Rs 10 crore. “The funds for the complex came from various sources, including a grant from the Centre, state, Smart City, AMRUT and MC Head,” said Bhardwaj.
Overall, the complex has 217 shops and 12 bakeries. While the MC has already identified 146 beneficiaries (all these vendors had deposited Rs 35,000 each with the MC), the MC is yet to decide on how to allot the remaining shops.
Initially, the MC had decided to auction the 71 shops that would be left after the allotment to the identified beneficiary, but several councilors registered their opposition to the plan. “We will again bring the matter in the House and then decide how to allot the remaining shops,” said Bhardwaj.