Chandigarh, July 8, 2020: The Department of Community Medicine & School of Public Health, PGIMER, Chandi-garh, Department of Local Govern-ment, Chandigarh in collaboration with Municipal Corporation Mohali (SAS Nagar) jointly organized aca-pacity building and training work-shop.
The venue for the workshop was the Auditorium of Municipal Corpo-ration Mohali (SAS Nagar), Sector 68, SAS Nagar, Punjab.
31 street vendors were registered and attended the training session, following strict social distancing norms.
The vendors were given free ‘Street Food Vendor’s Hygiene Kit’ which included an apron, gloves, head covers and easy to understand IEC material.
The Chief Guest, Health Minister of Punjab, Balbir Singh Sidhu, showing his gratitude towards this project, said that it is a moment of pleasure that our concerned authori-ties are playing such an important role during the period of pandemic.
The Guest of Honour was Sanjay Kumar, Additional Chief Secretary, Local Government, Punjab. Both wished that such training be organ-ised in all of the 22 districts of Pun-jabe.
The Training was organised under the guidance of Dr. Kamal Kumar Garg, Commissioner, Municipal Corporation, Mohali and he also gave the inaugural address for the workshop.
A brief session was held by San-jay Kumar in which various loans schemes of the Punjab Government for the street vendors were introduced.
Many loan schemes provide loans of around 10,000 rupees per annum on a subsidised rate; without asking for any sort of guarantees or securi-ty from the street vendor.
Additional information on a newly launched online portal for street vendors created a sense of aware-ness about the ease and secured registration for getting a street ven-dor’s licence.
Announcements such as special leverage that will be given to ven-dor’s registration fees that cost Rs 500 rupees, was waived by the Pun-jab government.
Ravinder and his team from Rudra Theatre Company presented a skit entitled ‘Changu Mangu Ki Chat –a story for awareness of Rehri Wala’. The skit focused on the need for such training workshops for street vendors and the benefits that will be reaped from it.
Radesh Kalra, Deputy Director, Local Government Punjab, dis-cussed the matter related to bye-laws of street vendors. He also shared the various schemes under the livelihood mission for the bene-fit of the vendors and urban poor community.
The training sessions were impart-ed by experts from various fields, to encourage and ensure that operation of Punjab Street vendors conform to the byelaws of MC Mohali, Food Safety and Standard Regulation, Street Vendors Act 2014 and other important aspects of street vending.
Dr Poonam, PGIMER highlighted the importance of precautions to be taken while purchasing and ordering food, preparing and handling food during Corona pandemic. She talked about other aspects such as precau-tions to be taken while disposing leftover food, personal hygiene practices and how to keep street food vendor carts disinfected.
Dr. B K Padhi, PGIMER gave his views on environmental impacts on health and food vending. Demon-stration was given for the correct way of solid waste management, mask wearing and hand washing.
Darshan Singh and Harkit Singh, Financial Literacy Counsellors delivered a lecture to increase awareness about financial literacy and various micro financing schemes for street food vendors.
Dr. Geeta Mehra fMCM-DAV, Sector 36, Chandigarh gave a very interactive demonstrative session on various kinds of adulterants to which street vendor’s usually come across their daily lives.
Coordination of the workshop activities was done by Dr. Vijayen-der Bhardwaj and his team from PGIMER.