Is Footpath Business Becoming Big Issue for Kathmandu?
Kathmandu, the capital city of the country Nepal, ran into its first problems with the footpath collection for these years. The KMC clarified that the business of footpath is restricted and that this business will be removed according to laws. And this is where the problem arises. Kathmandu, being the commercial capital of the country, is a prime location for footpath shops. Locals here are constantly fighting against the constant struggle just to find a way out.
What is the issue?
For a long time, Footpath Business has been flourishing in the chowks and streets of Kathmandu. The Footpath business is booming, whether it’s blocking the road or causing traffic jams. The Kathmandu Metropolitan believes that this has caused many problems. Government officials are of the view that the sidewalk trade has also played a major role in increasing road accidents. Traders believe that those who rented expensive shutters are also affected.
What types of footpath business in Kathmandu?
From daily necessities to food, snacks, vegetables, fruits, clothes, and other electronics goods are being traded on the sidewalk. Carts have also been used extensively in such trade along the roads and at main checkpoints. But the most interesting thing is that such shops are very crowded.
Are footpath businesses cheap?
Many customers have the experience that goods are cheaper on the footpath than in other shopping malls and business centers. There is a lot of understanding that there can be a lot of congestion on the footpath as there is not much difference in quality but there is a lot of price difference.
What did the KMC say about the footpath stalls?
It has been declared by Kathmandu Metropolitan City (KMC) that the operation of the footpath business will remove permanently. The Kathmandu Metropolitan City clarified that footpath trade in Kathmandu city is illegal. The head of the KMC’s public relations said that the stalls were removed based on the practice of the law during the 18th SAARC Summit. He said that those who have been operating the footpath shops were violating the laws. But the problem is still the same.
What are the rules for operating footpath stalls?
Many laws govern the operation of footpath stalls in Nepal. A KMC spokesperson told that the operation of footpath stalls is illegal and that these stalls were removed as per the laws. The KMC also said that the operation of footpath stalls and illegal hawking is punishable by law. Violators will be prosecuted according to law. But other officials maintain that the operation of footpath stalls should be allowed as it is considered to be a form of business. The issue is that KMC has not yet conducted a study on whether or not the operation of footpath stalls is legal. It is also unclear whether the operation of footpath stalls would be permitted during the upcoming days.
What can be done?
To market their product, many vendors were forced to change their business to selling food from stalls, side roads and, other public places. Now, the foundations of these stalls are being removed by the KMC, and the vendors are struggling to find new locations. This is frustrating for vendors as they are now having to do the same things. But not only KMC but also the central government needs to decide on this.
What do the officials and rights activists say?
Everyone has their own views and opinions. Government officials consider that street trade illegal and insist that it be removed immediately. Similarly, culture and tourism experts seem to agree with the government officials on some issues about Kathmandu. Cultural experts and tourism experts are of the opinion that road business should be organized. But right activists say that those who do business should be given a large discount. They say either the government should provide proper employment or the street trade should be given space or time.
What is the solution to the problem?
KMC’s initiatives do not seem to be enough to solve the problem. The biggest problems are unemployment and centralized governance. The root of the problem is the lack of proper work even though the country has gone to the state system. It is necessary to develop other cities and provincial capitals. This will reduce the population density of Kathmandu and help reduce the footpath business in Kathmandu.
Whatever the reason, the sidewalk business is a big issue for Kathmandu. The only way to solve the problem of footpath business in Kathmandu is to create jobs and decentralize the centralized governance system. Such actions will reduce the pressure on Kathmandu. And the Footpath Business can be ended forever in Kathmandu.