Resettling the Displaced: : The MUTP is the first attempt in India to resettle a very large number of urban dwellers displaced while improving urban infrastructure. The resettlement process itself has been an unprecedented, pioneering exercise in improving the lives of the urban poor. So far, some 18,500 families - including thousands of squatter families living in shacks along railway tracks - have been relocated to safe permanent dwellings and given legal title to their new housing. About 1500 shops have been relocated. As a result, the speed of suburban trains has improved, reducing commuting time for about six million citizens every day. The process involved tremendous efforts in assessing those displaced, building resettlement sites, consultation, negotiation, relocation, and providing post-resettlement support. In the process, many lessons have been learnt that will be useful in future projects in India and the world. Read Full Story
VOICES OF THE PEOPLE:
,a former resident of a one-roomed tin shack a hair’s breadth away from the railway tracks, has now been resettled in a 225 sq. ft apartment in Mankhurd.
“ In the slum, the children used to fall ill frequently and had to miss school often. Now, in the new housing, school buses come to our neighborhood, and the children are doing much better in their studies. Also, there is peace now, and a huge sense of security. We don’t have to face the horrific accidents, and I am no longer afraid.”
37 year old Jyothi Pujari's life has changed dramatically ever since she moved to her brand new apartment. For the first time in their lives, the resettled slum-dwellers now legally own their own homes in Mumbai. The new brick and mortar apartments are also a huge improvement from the makeshift slum dwellings, especially during Mumbai’s fierce monsoon rains. (Read More)
“ When we lived in the slum, women didn’t venture too far. I never worked either. After moving here, I've begun to cater for hot lunches. I earn about Rs 7,500 a month, enough for my son and I to live well. ”
, resident of the Majaz resettlement site
Married at sixteen, and widowed two years later, Madhavi Shinde has always depended on the men in her family to support her. No longer. While still in the transit camp, Madhavi learnt catering and sewing from an NGO. She now has an income of her own from sewing assignments and catering for hot lunches. This has given her and her sixteen year old son a huge sense of independence. “ I’ve also been chosen to be the president of the women’s group – Mahila Mandal – of our building,” she says. “I like it when people address me as Madam. I now want to save for my son’s education so that he can stand on his own two feet too.”
is making the most of the new opportunties that are being provided at the Majaz resettlement site.
“ I want to take up a design course after I finish school. Knowing how to use a computer will always be helpful in future. ”
17 year old Rubina Shaufat, a commerce student in Class 12, is learning computer basics by paying as little as Rs.100 for four months training. A local charitable trust has set up the learning center with ten spanking new computers. The courses are very popular as computer skills enable job seekers to command better salaries. “I want to take up a design course after I finish school. Knowing how to use a computer will always be helpful,” she says.
“ I am now able to support my old mother who used to be a domestic worker, as well as my five younger brothers and sisters. ”
used to earn just Rs.3000 a month in a low paying job. Now that the family has moved to an apartment at the Mankhurd resettlement site, Nirmala runs a small beauty parlor from her ground floor home, earning Rs.7000 each month.
Nirmala Ninave is proud of her small beauty parlor. Nirmala learnt her new job skills from an NGO that had been hired by the MUTP to train resettled slum dwellers in marketable skills. “ Now that I have earned a name for myself, I want to take a bank loan to buy a regular shop.”