Delhi Slums Eviction: The SC directed the railways for the encroachment of 48,000 slum dwellings within 3 months. This a detailed report on how the slum dwellers survive in the worst of conditions one can ever imagine.
SC Orders Eviction 48000 Slums Near Delhi Rail
The Supreme Court on Thursday ordered the removal of close to 48,000 slum dwellings situated along railway tracks in Delhi within three months, and to ensure compliance of its order, has stopped any court from passing an order of stay against such removal.
The South Delhi Municipal Corporation and the Railways have been asked to create an action plan within 3 months to evict illegal encroachments next to 140 km of railway tracks in the national capital.
“No interference, political or otherwise, should be there and no court shall grant any stay with respect to the removal of the encroachments,” the Supreme Court said in its order.
The SC decision brings 48,000 slum dwellers human rights into question, let’s take a look on encroachment, survival, and issues faced by the slum dwellers
Slum can be defined as ‘A residential area where dwellings are unfit for human habitation by reasons of dilapidation, overcrowding, lack of ventilation or sanitation facility, and having drinking water facilities in unhygienic conditions’.
In India, slums have been called various names; like Jhopda, Jhuggi, Gandi Basti/Maleen Basti (dirty slums), etc. most inhumane and deplorable conditions, as the slums are marked by overcrowdedness and without basic amenities.
It’s so ironic that Delhi’s slums (like all over India) are the abode of lakhs of people whose work makes the lives of its better-off citizens easier and comfortable but they themselves are forced to live in the worst of conditions. They don’t even have access to a basic need like functional toilets, breeding indignity, and infections in their daily lives.
The world doesn’t look like what you think it looks like: It’s so strange that just a few kilometres can make a place so different from our normal world. When we travel by train or stay anywhere near the railway station, we can see the actual conditions of the slum dwellers, dressed in torn clothes, living in houses made of plastics or jute bags and somehow feeding their children and themselves.
The slum areas of Delhi:
According to the railways, 6 lakh sq m of land has been illegally occupied by slum dwellers across the city. The worst affected areas are in North and North-West Delhi, which account for nearly half of the total encroached railway land. More than 24,000 jhuggis in 25 JJ clusters have been built in these two districts alone.
These are followed by areas in East, South and South-West Delhi, where nearly 18,000 jhuggis have been collectively raised over the years. In the New Delhi district, where two clusters with nearly 100 shanties have come up on the railway’s land.
In Delhi, areas like Shakur Basti, Nizamuddin, Azad Colony, Wazirpur, Nangloi, Daya Basti, Zakhira, Tughlakabad, Seelampur, and Shahdara are the worst affected. Thousands of slum dwellers have been living along the railway tracks for several years now.
The other areas where encroachment is rampant include Mayapuri, Prem Baadi Bridge, Kishanganj, Old Rohtak Road, and Pragati Maidan.
The following problems are plaguing the Delhi Slums:
1. Garbage & Filth: We could see dumps of garbage everywhere. The dumped waste emanate foul odour and at the same time becomes breeding ground for flies and mosquitoes which carry several diseases with them. Also, children play near the garbage dumps oblivious of the fact that they may get infected with some fatal disease. During the rainy season, standing water can be seen everywhere, spreading all kinds of water-borne diseases.
2. Miserable Toilets: The slum dwellers do not have toilets. Some try to use the community toilets which are generally do not have any maintenance and are full of filth and human excreta.
3. Cramped Houses: It’s difficult to even imagine the living conditions of the houses there unless and until you actually experience this nightmare. Six to eight people share a cramped room and only they know as to how so many people fit in such a small room. The streets are narrow and the sewage water stagnates in open surface drains, which emit bad smell. The houses are made of cement bags, jute bags, and garbage collected by the dwellers.