Kolkata becomes first Indian metro to get a floating market

Our Bureau Kolkata | Updated on January 25, 2018

Kept afloat A view of the Kolkata floating market, which aims to rehabilitate over 200 shopkeepers whose outlets were demolished for a road widening project   -  Debashish Bhaduri

Over 110 boats will host shops that shoppers can access via wooden walkways

Kolkata is now witness to a floating market, the first of its kind across any metro.

The market, as the name suggests, will be located on a water-body with boats doubling up as shops.

The market, located on the eastern fringes of the city, was inaugurated by West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Wednesday, and open to the public from Thursday.

The aim is to rehabilitate over 200 shopkeepers from a nearby market that was demolished for the widening of the Eastern Metropolitan Bypass — an important road that connects the northern parts of the city to the eastern and southern tips.

According to government officials, the market will host at least 114 boats, each one accommodating two shops.

Shops will sell regular or daily-use items that include vegetables, fruits, flowers, fish and meat and poultry. Shoppers will approach the boats through wooden walkways.

Special provisions have also been made to ensure that water in the lake does not stink and the aquatic life survives. The market will remain open from 6 am to 9 pm on all days, with a break in the afternoon.

The Kolkata Metropolitan Development Authority, the executing agency, has apparently asked shopkeepers not to throw waste into the water.

Nets will be routinely used to fish out vegetable peel, fish scales and other waste from the water.

Published on January 25, 2018

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