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Tuesday, January 18, 2022

SGPDA’s wholesale fish market opens amidst mess, traders say they wont pay charges till facilities are in place

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Margao: While wholesale fish market controlled by SGPDA has begun the operation in Margao city, the woes still continue haunting the traders and the buyers. SGPDA has been acting high handed at the market, which they had refused to open for the trade despite directions by Union Ministry of Home Affairs as a part of unlocking 1.0.

The wholesale fish traders complaint that they have been charged exorbitant fees though SGPDA do not even offer basic facilities at the market, which is located at the outskirt of the city. The trucks are charged Rs 500 per hour.

Wholesale Fish Markets Association President Maulana Ibrahim said that they will refuse to pay the charges to SGPDA, till they are provided with the facilities.

“You look around in the market. It is full of muck and mess. We will pay the charges, only when SGPDA develops the market, at least to the minimum standards,” he said.

The market has been bone of contention between SGPDA Chairman Wildred D’Sa and the wholesale fish traders during the lockdown time. D’Sa had demanded that the wholesalers should provide detail about the trucks carrying the fish before the market is opened. The wholesalers had to approach High Court to get the favourable order to open the market.

While welcoming the decision by Food and Drugs Administration to check the fish imported in the state, Ibrahim said that the checks should continue as it will build confidence amongst the buyers that the fish is chemical free.

In what can be termed as yet another problem at the market, the authorities has not been allowing the buyers to park their vehicles near the market, due to which they have to travel a distance with the fish buckets.

“There are no head loaders available to carry the buckets. I see no logic in forcing the people to park the vehicles so far,” a local said.

While Fisheries Minister Filip Nery Rodrigues has conveniently turned his blind eye towards the tiff between SGPDA and wholesale fish sellers, the common people seems to be taking the hit.

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