Railways platform food vendors seek time to open stalls

Railways platform food vendors seek time to open stalls

The Railways Food Vending Association has said it is not ready to begin services on platforms due to the COVID-19 crisis and urged officials not to pressurise them opening stalls.

"There are many hurdles and unprecedented situations in reopening of the units (stalls) due to the ongoing lockdown/ containment zones and Red Zones in most of the states of the country", Akhil Bharatiya Railway Khan-Pan Licensees Welfare Association president Ravinder Gupta said in a letter to Railway Board Chairman V K Yadav on May 28.

The Association sought reasonable time to open static stalls on platforms.

All stalls on platforms have been shut throughout the country since lockdown announced on March 24 to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the Railway Board on May 21 directed all zonal railways to take steps to open permanent and vending stalls located inside railway stations with immediate effect.

The Association letter also said that most vendors had migrated to their hometowns due to the lockdown and raised the issue of safety for vendors alleging that no arrangements have been made for the protection of men and material on platforms.

The association also raised the incidents of passengers of Shramik Special looting and vandalising some of the stalls and said these incidents caused heavy damages to some stalls.

There are around one lakh static units or stall at 9,000 railway stations.

 

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