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Kolkata street hawkers form human chain in protest against eviction

Kolkata, Fri, 27 Jan 2012 ANI

Kolkata, Jan 27 (ANI): Members of several hawker unions here on Friday formed a human chain in their stir against the civic authorities and the police, alleging them of hatching a conspiracy to evict hawkers for their personal gains.


The members said that the eviction was carried out in an unjust manner, without any kind of rehabilitation provided to them by the state government.


According to several hawker federations, they were permitted to sell goods on the streets by the Kolkata Municipal Corporation board, but the police evicted them later on.


"Today, we have formed a human chain, because on the January 2, 18 hawkers were evicted from this area. The Central Government, which has made the model act, the policy that they have made is different and according to the policy made by the West Bengal initially, no hawker was supposed to be evicted before rehabilitating them," said General Secretary of National Hawkers Federation, Shaktiman Ghosh.


In a bid to protest this injustice, the hawkers had demonstrated outside the SSKM hospital in the city, but police action deterred their agitation.


They were made to believe that the hospital authorities considered their protest a nuisance.


"10,000 hawkers have been pushed into this due to eviction. This is very unfortunate, this is why we are starting this programme and we would continue this till February 22, which will be 'Jail Bharo'. At the press conference today at Press Club, we will declare our programme," said Ghosh.


According to media reports, the West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said this was just a racket to raise money and added that the government has always been sensitive to the needs of these sellers. (ANI)


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