Vendor ban sees city lose flavour

Vendor ban sees city lose flavour

Sellers and customers alike losing out due to indiscriminate edict

Take from Boonlom Pholkhammak about the vapid quality of street food and street life. The 54-year-old vender from the northeastern province of Maha Sarakham has been hawking Thai sweets in the Phaya Thai, Ratchaprarop and Din Daeng areas for more than 30 years. (Photo by Penchan Charoensuthipan)
Take from Boonlom Pholkhammak about the vapid quality of street food and street life. The 54-year-old vender from the northeastern province of Maha Sarakham has been hawking Thai sweets in the Phaya Thai, Ratchaprarop and Din Daeng areas for more than 30 years. (Photo by Penchan Charoensuthipan)

Thailand has been recognised as a global capital for street food over the past few years, with the food stalls scattered here, there and everywhere, on the pavements and by the roadside, considered part of the city's charm.

But the rather strict implementation of a policy aimed at regulating Bangkok's pavements by the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) and the Metropolitan Police Bureau (MPB) has had an adverse effect on the character of this metropolis.

Cleanliness, pedestrian safety and the rights of shop owners and tenants whose shopfronts or driveways are blocked by the street stalls and vendors are among the main reasons cited to justify the move to clear all street hawkers off Bangkok's pavements and the roadside.

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