By – Staff Reporter
India’s first floating market is set to open for public in January 2018, in Kolkata. Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee will inaugurate the market, which has been designed along the lines of floating markets seen in Bangkok.
A water body in Patuli area was transformed into the floating market by the Kolkata Metropolitan Development Authority (KMDA) in collaboration with the municipal corporation. It will house over 200 shops. The market is 500 meters long and 60 meters wide, and will have no entry fee. Around Rs 10 crore has been spent to develop the water body, mentions a The Indian Express report click here.
“Our Urban Development and Municipal Affairs Minister Firhad Hakim recently visited Bangkok to attend a seminar. There, he saw floating markets and decided to replicate such a market in Kolkata. In India, there is no floating market. The one you see at Kashmir’s Dal Lake is an unorganised market where individual sellers reach out to customers in houseboats. This will be the country’s first floating market and the third in Asia. The minister was looking for a place to set this up. When I came to know about his plan, I approached him and told him that there are water bodies in my ward which could be used to set up this market. He had sent KMDA officers to check the feasibility aspects of the water body. After getting a positive report, the KMDA along with the KMC took the initiative to set up the market,” councillor of Ward 110 of Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC), Arup Chakraborty told The Indian Express.
The market will be divide into four sections—fish, meat, grocery and vegetable. The walkways on the water body will help people reach these sections, and there will be floating boat shops on each sides of these walkways that would be used to sell goods. Reportedly, shopkeepers who were evicted from the Eastern Metropolitan Bypass area due to road widening will be rehabilitated in the floating market.
“These water bodies work as natural drainage systems. In monsoon, rain water used to accumulate here. Now we have revamped the drainage system. We will install aerator machines in the water body to remove the organic waste. We will also cultivate a type of fish in the water body which will consume the inorganic and bio-degradable waste. In addition, our workers will be there to remove plastic bags and other types of waste,” the councillor told The Indian Express, assuring that the market would not pose any threat to the environment.