Srinagar, Feb 21: Srinagar Municipal Corporation has directed the owners of make-shift shopkeepers to vacate the Municipal shop-site at Lal chowk along the retaining wall of Biscoe School. The owners of these shops have however approached court of law and brought a stay.
Chief Revenue Officer Srinagar Municipal Corporation in a written direction to these shop owners has accused them of selling lotteries, contraband drugs and propagating gambling.
“In order to observe the mandate of Law and to save the General Public as well as students and business community from the menace of drug abuses, Lottery Sale, Gambling etc at site, you are hereby notified to close down the illegal business and vacate the shop site within 3 days,” the order copy that lies with news agency CNS reads. It warns to owners of these shops that in case of non-compliance, SMC shall be fully competent to seal the structure and “evict you from the said shop-site with or without Police assistance purely in the general public interest.
The SMC issued these directions after a complainant to Corporation alleged that illegal business of sale of Lottery is being run at site. Acting upon the complaint a team of SMC and SHO Kothi Bagh Police Station visited the site for spot assessment and found the contents of complaint true and based on facts.
The owners of these shops including Jan Muhammad, Muhammad Amin, Mushtaq Ahmed, Bilal Ahmed Dar, Bashir Ahmed Wani, Manzoor Ahmed and Muhammad Yasin told news agency CNS that they are not doing any illegal business here but have been running these shops to earn their livelihood. “It is a conspiracy to deprive us from our livelihood. We have approached the court of law and brought a Stay,” they said.
These shopkeepers said that they are paying GST and other taxes and follow all the norms of law. “The notice issued by SMC is unjustified and uncalled for,” the shopkeepers said.