Shopkeepers, vendors block Srinagar footpaths

Srinagar, Apr 22: In certain areas of Srinagar city, shopkeepers and vendors have encroached the footpaths which create problems for pedestrians and they are forced to walk on the main road.
It seems footpaths are not meant for people as these are used for special commercial purposes after being encroached upon by shopkeepers, fruit and vegetable vendors.
The shopkeepers in different areas of Srinagar especially in Baghwanpora area of Noorbagh and Safakadal have set up stalls on footpaths and roads thereby hindering the movement of pedestrians.
As per commuters, they have to face immense hardships due to the presence of stalls and carts on roadsides and footpaths. “There is no room for pedestrians as most of the space on footpaths is taken by vendors and we are forced to walk on the roads increasing the risk of accidents,” Ishfaq Bhat, a commuter said
Aquib Dar, a student said that almost all the footpaths in Lalchowk, Safakadal, Baghwanpora and other parts of the city have been grabbed by the vendors and “we are forced to get down from the footpath to avoid bumping into street vendors or other pedestrians thereby affecting the overall traffic and crowd management in Srinagar city.”
“These consciousness shopkeepers and vendors choke the movement of traffic, causing inconvenience to common people. SMC is blamed for all this mess. I myself witnessed many times a police party removed some vendors near Safakadal, but as soon as the party disappeared, the vendors re-occupied the footpath,” a local, Mukhtar Ahmed said.