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Fixing traffic, vendors a first step towards reform

Yesterday marked the first day of the junta's move towards reform, as it restored order in terms of public transport and hawkers in Bangkok and major provinces.

Among the key plans was restoring order at Victory Monument by relocating commuter vans to Makkasan Airport Link station and removing vendors from the area.

Pol Maj-General Niphon Charoenphol, a deputy Bangkok police chief, said that thanks to this reorganisation, the traffic flow in the area had improved by 70 per cent.

Each van takes about 10 minutes to go from Makkasan to Victory Monument to drop off passengers and the authorities have even reserved a space for about 150 vans to park during rush hour.

Hawkers are being temporarily kept away until new sites can be made available for them, city clerk Ninnart Chalitanont said after inspecting the area.

Meanwhile, order has been restored in the main commuter terminal in Suphan Buri, where travel fares are now stated clearly. Also safety measures, such as seat-belt regulations, are being imposed strictly. Similar scenarios are being seen in many other provinces including Kalasin, Nakhon Ratchasima and Surat Thani.

The junta has postponed by a month a plan to punish vendors for illegally setting up stalls on sidewalks. Stalls cannot be set up in eight areas, namely Sukhumvit Soi 77 and Soi 103, Ramdamnoen Klang Avenue, the area near CentralWorld, Pratunam, Saphan Khao and the Bang Kapi area.

Separately, action is being taken against the encroachment of forests and government properties in Krabi, with a six-month deadline set for the suppression of all such violations.


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