IMPHAL, Nov 18: Resumption of daily business at the newly reconstructed three market sheds of Khwairamband Bazar is likely in the coming few days as altogether 3600 women vendors have completed necessary formalities and performed traditional rituals to start their daily businesses.
Traditional ritual ceremony of shifitng of Keithel Lairemba and Lairembi from temporary Khwairamband market shed to the newly reconstructed market sheds were performed today with much fanfare and extravaganza.
Chief Minister O Ibobi, works minister K Ranjit and IFCD minister N Biren were present at the gracing occasion.
Speaking at the occasion, Chief Minister Okram Ibobi stated that the three newly inaugurated markets could accommodate only the existing licensee women vendors. The demand made by various communities for the allocation for new vending spaces at these markets cannot be accomplished under any circumstance at present, the CM asserted.
He said that the existing license holders have even outnumbered the total vending spaces available in these markets. The demand for new vending spaces can be considered only when three more markets are being constructed as per the announcement of Sonia Gandhi made during a public meeting held at the Kangla.
The Chief Minister also assured that separate bank for women, health care centre and fast-food stalls will be opened soon at these markets for the convenience of the women vendors and there will also be 24×7 water and power supply to these markets.
He further appealed to the women vendors to maintain utmost cleanliness at the market complex and render support to the authority to flush out any unauthorized vendor from the market complex. They should also regard the markets as their own property rather than public property, Ibobi enjoined.
The idols of local deity known as “Keithel Lairembi” were also brought inside the complex which according to the women folk believes that the deity will help in ushering peace and prosperity to the whole business activities of Khwairamband Bazar.
The women vendors offered prayers to “Keithel Lairembi” before they began their business activities at the newly inaugurated market complex.
The occasion was also marked by entertaining and extravagant programmes of Shumang Lila and musical concert presented by the star-artistes of the state.
Speaking to IFP, one woman vendor Memchoubi said, “I am overwhelmed that I am going to start my business at this new market from today. The women vendors of Khwairamband Bazar have been waiting for this day for the last many years”.
“No word can actually express our happiness. We are indeed grateful to the state government for handing over these markets after they were formally inaugurated by Sonia Gandhi on November 12”, she added.
It may be mentioned that the three markets of Khwairamband Ema Keithel, Khwai Nupi Keithel and Anouba Keithel have been constructed by various agencies such as SIMPLEX and NBCC at an estimated cost of Rs 70 crores. The women vendors have been doing their daily business at the temporary market sheds at the site of Old District Hospital since 2004.