Residents of nearly 70 slums are planning to hold a rally in the Capital on December 10 demanding in situ redevelopment of all slums that have existed for more than 10 years, ownership rights to slum residents, removal of cut-off dates, provision of all basic amenities before resettlement, and more efforts to improve the condition of those living on footpaths and the homeless.

The rally is being organised by the Jhuggi-Jhonpri Ekta Manch in association with the Shahri Adhikar Manch. At a meeting organised at the Gandhi Peace Foundation this past week, Jawahar Singh, leader of the JJEM, claimed the support of pradhans of several large slums and resettlement colonies in the Capital for the rally.

A number of representatives of NGOs active in the city, including the National Campaign on Dalit Human Rights, Delhi Forum, Indo-Global Social Service Society, Matri Sudha, and Kachra Kaamgar Shramik Mahasangh, spoke at the meeting.

List of demands

Mr. Singh also read out a list of 15 demands that would be submitted to the Central Government at the end of the rally. They demanded that a clear policy on housing and displacement through consultation with rights groups be arrived at.

The demands include the continuation of in situ slum upgradation programmes of previous years where slums have been rehabilitated at the same site at Prayog Vihar, Ekta Vihar and Shanti Vihar. Slums which have existed for more than 10 years should not be displaced to another location, the activists argued.

They also pointed out that surveys of slums have not been done scientifically and the lists so produced have excluded several bona fide slum dwellers and that any government-issued document should suffice for identification purposes.

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