Fee charged on stallers land in state treasury: Kabul Municipality

KABUL (Pajhwok): Some residents in capital Kabul say stalls distributed to vendors in capital Kabul help improved the order and cleanliness of the city while Municipality administration said the stalls placed temporarily in public places.
Meanwhile stallers complained against the high rent of their stalls and demanded the municipality to decrease the rent.
Referring to the high monthly rent for the stalls, the municipality administration said the matter of the rent was related to the cabinet and they also suggested to the cabinet to reduce the rent.
Amid at bringing order and dealing with the growing congestion, the Municipality last installed unmovable stalls on roadsides in different places, including Sara-i-Shamali, Fruit Market, Pul-i-Kheshti and other places.
The move was highly appreciated by the people and termed it beneficial in bring beauty to the city and removing congestion.
Hikmatullah, the resident of Kabul City, said in the past the hand-carts were moving in the middle of the road and now the installation of stalls brought order as all the stalls are organized in a single row.
Syed Alam, a driver in Kabul City expressed happiness with the installation of stalls, and asked the government to implement the plan in other parts of the city as well where hand-carts creating problems and block the road.
Ghulam Mohammad, the representative of 250 stalls, in the Fruit Market said of the of the total 250 stalls only 70 were active and the remaining had been closed because the owners were unable to pay the rent.
He said the Municipality administration last week closed nine stalls due to the non-payment of rent and warned others as well to pay the rent otherwise they will by also shut.
Ghulam Dastagir, who sell plastic in one of the stalls, said the amount government set as rent was back broking, adding that in the past hey paid 370 afs rent but now had to pay 5,250 afs at a time when the income and market condition had worsened.
Haseebullah, another staller who sell clothes in the Taimani 2nd road, said in the past he did not pay the rent but bow they have to pay 1,720 afs. These shopkeepers were thrilled to have seen a proper place provided to them for their business but demanded decline in the rent as well.
Municipality representative, Niamatullah Barakzai, said vender work was a half day temporary job adding that a vendor could not stay at one point and do his job.
He said the amount charge on stallers was not a rent but a fee and according to the law municipality could charge fee on individuals who use a public place for any activity.
The fee had been divided in three category considering the congestion and location. In the first category one square metre area is charged 320 afs, second category the same area is charged 920 afs and in the third category one square metre area sis charged 1,720 afs. He said the high amount of fee which is up to 6,000 afs is due to the large area occupied by the stallers, adding that an individual could do it in one square metre area as well.
Barakzai said in the past a mafia system was imposed and the public money landed in the private pocket bu not the public money is going to the government treasury.
Referring to the high rate of fee charged on stallers, he said he issue was related to the cabinet and they had suggested to the cabinet about the decline in the stalls fees. He, however, said until a new decision is taken by the cabinet the stallers should pay their fee.