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Virtual licence Fee

Calcutta, Nov. 29: In his bid to legalise hawkers, mayor Bikash Ranjan Bhattacharyya today announced that they would have to pay a “service charge”.

“We provide them with water and we clean up all the mess they create. They will have to pay for it.”

Legal experts said charging this fee would legitimise their place on the pavements. The CMC has already said it will issue identity cards to the hawkers, identifying the space they occupy.

“This is tantamount to recognising the right of the hawker,” said advocate Ashok Kumar Chakraborty.

The CMC is also considering providing hawkers with electric meters, another legitimising move.

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