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A landmark bereft of facilities

A landmark bereft of facilities
Highlights

Monda Market was established more than 143 years ago to cater to resident British army units stationed at Secunderabad. Located approximately 500 meters from the Secunderabad Railway Station, it is one of the largest wholesale and retail markets in Asia and was popularly known as Hissamgung.

Monda Market was established more than 143 years ago to cater to resident British army units stationed at Secunderabad. Located approximately 500 meters from the Secunderabad Railway Station, it is one of the largest wholesale and retail markets in Asia and was popularly known as Hissamgung.


History

Talking about the market, Y Pentaiah, president, General Merchants Association of Secunderabad, says, “Started in 1872 and spread over seven acres, this market has four entrances. Once upon a time, there were nearly 350 shops which catered to societal needs from birth to death.


Everything an ordinary household requires – vegetables, meat (raw and dry), fish, groceries, fruits, flowers and pooja items – are being sold in the market ever since its inception. Even goods necessary for marriages, earthen pots, clothes and everything else are sold nearby all 365 days of the year. Back in the time when the British were camping in the cantonment area, they were the prime customers.


The market was very clean and the livestock sold in the market was quality certified by veterinarians. Entry of dogs was strictly prohibited and sentry guards were posted at all the main entry gates to ensure safety and security.” Right from the start, there have been vendors speaking different languages, belonging to varied religions, minorities and also deprived sections of the society.


Also, many women of the minority communities are eking out a livelihood by selling household necessities. Generation after generation has been associated with the market, selling various goods from vegetables to groceries in this market. The major landmarks nearby are the Old Jail (1826), Dandoo Clock Tower (opened on August 20, 1940, by Lt Col. AJ Vann, President, Cantonment Board, Secunderabad), Rajeshwari Talkies (1926), Jagadish Stores (1940).


Problems

“Our ancestors have been doing business in this market since its establishment. And now, we are the tenants of GHMC which is relentlessly increasing the rent despite no better amenities or conveniences. More than 3,000 labourers depend on this market. Not just the vendors there are helpers and vegetable carriers who are mainly women who earn meager daily wages of around Rs 250 per day. It is necessary that better facilities are provided,” shares Pentaiah.


He added, “CM K Chandrasekhar Rao had visited the market on February 1 and found that existing facilities are not up to the mark and are causing inconvenience to both the vendors and customers. He directed officials to take up immediate measures to ensure basic facilities.”


Pentaiah claims to have given a representation to the GHMC (earlier MCH) and to various chief ministers in 1990, 1995, 2013 and recently on June 5 along with former MLA M Shashidhar Reddy requesting the provision of watch and ward at all four gates at the market round the clock.


“We also asked for supply of drinking water, construction of toilets and regular cleaning facility at the market. Our other request was that the lease deeds of tenants who have died be transferred to their kith and kin who are running business now. We are awaiting the fulfillment of at least some of our requests,” he elucidates.

By:Ch Saibaba

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