Mumbai Police on Saturday started clampdown against people and hawkers crowding the Dadar Market as the state capital recorded surge in Covid cases recently. Police caught illegal hawkers operating on roads and sidewalks unaware. The buzzing market came to a grinding halt as police began its action, clearing off all the illegal hawkers spread across one kilometre stretch.
Visuals of crowded market had become a regular feature at in Mumbai adjacent to the Dadar railway station. Fruit, vegetable and flower vendors choke up the side walk and narrow lanes below the Dadar flyover causing traffic jam and excessive crowding during through the day.
Residents in the area say post lockdown their numbers have multiplied by 50 percent. "The illegal hawkers here are a menace and the reason behind this kind crowding at the Dadar market. All attempts to disperse them have gone in vain. Even if they are cleared off they return back next day, I see so many new faces selling on the roads here" Sunil Shah, President of Dadar Vyapari Market Sangh said.
On Friday, Mumbai crossed the 3,000 mark and reported its highest single day spike, with positivity rate up to 0.51 percent and recovery down to 91%. Indicative of how the covid pandemic once again has gripped the maximum city.
"This is a crowded market, we try to neutralise that looking at the current scenario, it's our daily drill to clear off the road to ease traffic. We use microphones to advise people to follow covid norms like wearing masks, keeping distance. There are three mandis here so crowding happens, many are farmers and this is essential item so we make them aware of the situation. BMC has given us authority to fine so we catch hold of mask offenders and fine them also," a police officer on duty said.
As part of measures to curb virus spread and ensure crowded area don't add to their problems, the BMC will soon conduct random rapid antigen tests at crowded spots like markets, railway stations and bus stops with an intent to detect positive carriers in time.