Rowdies extracting money and the lure of lucre are preventing people from vacating the buildings of Monda Market despite the obvious danger
“It was Chandrababu who envisioned changing the landscape of Secunderabad, but now it is a distant dream,” says a businessman. One of the important markets of the twin cities, Monda Market came into existence during the period of 1932-1936. It is spread across three acres from Ghasmandi Road to Station Road. Despite being shrouded in controversies, the market value of a single shop is worth between several lakhs to more than a crore.
Brisk business and handsome profits are the reasons for most traders continuing here despite being provided space in Bowenpally. Look how a well-meant thought becomes a racket. “The big market in Bowenpally came into existence so that all the traders move there. Now most of the smart ones have shops at both locations. One for wholesale and another for retail,” observes Parmeshwar Rao, an old timer in the area.
For some traders the GHMC is playing into the hands of the local rowdy elements which want to control the entire market.“If any of the authorities try to vacate the space of market forcefully, these elements will jump into fray. No one will benefit but them”, says another businessman, on the condition of anonymity. The rowdies extract hafta from them.
According to the businessmen, there was a proposal to build a multi-storied complex that would provide space to all kinds of official activity but the project could not materialise because of the controversies surrounding the market.
Fifty per cent of the market is under government space and the remaining under private ownership. Referring to the decision of Chandrababu Naidu, the then CM, a businessman points out that all occupants transferred the property from ‘lease’ to ‘ownership’ during the year 1996 in accordance with a GO.While most of the market is made of bricks and mortar (a few which were built in 1936 are of RCC).
“Although a few patches might have come out, the overall structure is strong enough to hold for several decades. Let the authorities intervene, but I can challenge that nothing will happen for ages. If the government is serious, it should provide some feasible solution, lest all the traders go astray,” said Suramma, who is doing business for more than three decades.It is due to these controversies in the area that even officials do not want to comment on the issue.
“Our work was to list the dilapidated buildings. Let the other departments do their bit of work to provide some alternative,” said Ramachander, assistant city planner.