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Deepavali bazaar to be relocated


NEW RULING: Stalls will not be allowed to block entrance to shops in Brickfields

SHOP owners in Jalan Tun Sambanthan in Brickfields can heave a sigh of relief as City Hall has decided to relocate the Deepavali bazaar stalls which used to operate on pavements in front of the shops.

A group of business traders and the disabled community were informed of the decision during a close-door meeting chaired by City Hall enforcement director Rolan Abd Rahman.

“There will be no stalls  on the pavements. We will provide a more suitable location maybe at an open space. The public can enjoy a better shopping experience with proper sanitation and all the necessary amenities,” said Rolan.

City Hall has yet to finalise the new location but among some possible areas are the site of the former Brickfields police station in Jalan Tun Sambanthan and a large plot of vacant land near Jalan Berhala which is presently utilised as a car park.

In recent years, the shop owners in Jalan Tun Sambanthan had been urging City Hall to relocate the Deepavali bazaar as they claimed that it blocked the entrances of some 250 shops.

The bazaar also caused inconvenience to the blind community as some of the stalls blocked the tact tile path used by them as a guide.

Rolan also said that this year, City Hall would be allocating the Deepavali bazaar lots to individuals based on the "draw lot" system.

"City Hall will draw lots and allocate all 800 lots to  traders just like how it is done for Ramadan bazaars. Those interested no longer need to go through any traders' association," he said.

The move would ensure more transparency in the allocation of lots and curb abuse.

Those interested in obtaining a Deepavali bazaar lot could send in their application between Sept 19 and Sept 21.

Lots will be drawn on Oct 2.

Rolan said the venue for the distribution of the bazaar application forms would be announced later.

Dr R. Narkunam, who operates a clinic in Jalan Tun Sambanthan, represented some 250  traders who were grateful to the media for highlighting their plight.

He also thanked the authorities for the positive changes and the promise to provide better facilities for the new bazaar.

"We are happy with City Hall's decision not to allow any stall to operate on the pavements.

"We also applaud City Hall's move to provide better sanitation, lights, water, security and other necessities.

"This is a step forward and we are happy," he said.

Assistant executive director of the National Council for the Blind, Malaysia, Moses Choo Siew Cheong said he was glad that all parties had made the best decision for the public, traders and the disabled community.

"The disabled community will now be able to utilise the pavements without any problems," said Choo.

Businessman G. Gunabalan, who is visually impaired, also applauded the decision.

He said positive changes should be welcomed and he urged the Deepavali bazaar  traders to be optimistic.

"Be open to changes and it may be for the better and we can have a merrier atmosphere at the new location," he said.

Secretary of Masjid India Petty Traders Association J. Asogan, meanwhile, urged City Hall to allow petty traders at Jalan Masjid India to allocate their own lots for the Deepavali bazaar.

"In the past four years, there had been no complaints over the bazaar in Jalan Masjid India. With this in mind, I hope City Hall will continue to allow us to distribute the lots among ourselves.

"We have 40 bazaar lots in front of Jalan Masjid India and some 25 lots near the Mydin shopping centre," he said.

The disabled community welcomes City Hall’s decision as tact tiles on pavements will no longer be blocked. File pic

Dr R. Narkunam

Stall operators will no longer operate at pavements. Pix by Lim Poh Chin

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