The majority of the Aasare houses constructed for those displaced in the 2009 floods in Gulbarga district has remained vacant or has been occupied by people other than the beneficiaries.
Most of the families who were displaced by the floods prefer to stay in their village owing to various reasons such as dispute over the size of the house allotted to them in the new township.
One of the problems is that the quality of construction in some of the new townships, such as Aurad (K) in Gulbarga taluk, is poor. Buildings have already developed cracks and many houses are leaking.
Chandrakant Holi, a resident of the new township, said that in addition to repairing the buildings, the authorities should ensure adequate supply of water. Mariappa Nagegowda, another resident, said that they had to visit Basapatna or Chikholga villages, 3 km from Aurad K to fetch water.
Lack of space
Mahadev Biradar was not ready to move to his new house preferring to stay in the old one though it was unsafe. The reason: lack of space.
“I have a tractor and four heads of cattle.In the house allotted to me, there is no place to keep my cattle or park my tractor. The officials did not consult the people affected before building the houses.”
In Aurad K, all the 210 houses were completed by Infosys with its funds. Parvathibai Melinmani of the same village did not hide her displeasure over the failure of the government to consult the beneficiaries before constructing the houses.
“We have to live in those houses, not the officials. Though the government’s idea of shifting the village to a safe place was good, constructing the houses without knowing the requirements of the beneficiaries has resulted in the failure of the entire move.”
One of the features noticed in majority of the new townships is that although the owners of the house have accepted the title deeds, they have allowed families who work in their fields to live in their houses without any rent.