Recently, the Supreme Court sought a reply from the Delhi Development Authority. The matter at hand pertained to the issue that the Delhi Master Plan, 2021 ignored the provision of Street Vendors (Protection of Livelihood and Regulation of Street Vending) Act, 2014. 

Street Vendors (Protection of Livelihood and Regulation of Street Vending) Act, 2014 encourages hawkers and small street vendors to pursue their career in a friendly atmosphere. The division bench of the Delhi High Court dealt with a plea filed by the Delhi Association of Street Vendors. The plea alleged that the interests of the street vendors were being ignored. 

The plea per say, points out various sections of the plan as being ultra vires with relation to the 2014 act. The Plan’s Section 5.10, which outlines rules for regulating the shadow economy, does not call for the formation of ‘Town Vending Committees’ to protect the rights and interests of street vendors. 

In the light of the arguments made, the plea sought the setting aside of sections 5.10.1, 5.10.2, 5.10.3, 5.10.4 and 5.10.5, as being ultra vires of the Street Vendors Act, 2014. It also sought the replacement of the above sections with section in line with the Street Vendors Act, 2014. 

The failure to execute the Street Vendors Act of 2014, according to the plea, would result in irreparable harm to urban street vendors and their vocation. Hence the Plea read; 

The overarching objective of the said Street Vendors (Protection of Livelihood and Regulation of Street Vending Act 2014, can be summarized as aiming to provide for and promote a supportive environment for urban street vendors to carry out their vocation while at the same time ensuring that vending activities do not lead to overcrowding and unsanitary conditions in public spaces and streets… If the Respondent authorities are not directed to take immediate and appropriate steps in order to implement the Street Vendors (Protection of Livelihood and Regulation of Street Vending) Act 2014, all the urban street vendors in the State shall continue to suffer irreparably which would result in an absolute miscarriage of justice.” 

A notice was issued by the court and the next hearing is slated for 12 January, 2022. 

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