Mumbai

‘Mumbai will be slum-free in four years’

Mumbai will have no slums in the next four years on account of the Slum Rehabilitation Authority (SRA) schemes, Dr. Sangita Hasnale, assistant municipal commissioner, planning, has said.

Dr. Hasnale made the remarks during a panel discussion on ‘Sustainable and Inclusive Urbanism’ during the Kala Ghoda Arts Festival 2020 on Friday.

The event was hosted by Consulate General of Sweden and Red Dot Foundation and was attended by, among others, Anna Lekvall, Consul General of Sweden in Mumbai, and Nilabh Nagar, urbanist and architect.

“Mumbai is now working towards how people can get a good life apart from the basic needs of food, clothing and shelter. Various women’s hostels, shelters, old age homes and night shelters are being constructed. In another four years, you won’t see any slums in Mumbai because of the SRA schemes,” Dr. Hasnale said.

Accesible, sustainable

Ms. Lekvall said an inclusive city is one that appreciates diversity, enhances the well-being of its citizens and provides accessibility to everyone irrespective of gender, abilities and status.

“By 2050, 70% of the world population will be in urban areas. The goal of the United Nations is to improve urban landscapes and make them accessible and sustainable. There is a lot of scope for technological solutions in this area and I can see an opportunity for collaboration between India and Sweden,” she said.

Mr. Nagar spoke about inclusion of the persons with disability in urbanism.

“Small interventions have begun in all places. The Metro stations in Pune are designed to be universally accessible, and the same was done with airports. We have also proposed to install signals with voice activating machinery on the Nagpur roads. Mumbai has a good public engagement and we should invest in it,” he said.

On the Sugamya Bharat scheme that the Central government unveiled last year, Dr. Hasnale said, “Steps have been taken to make the city and its infrastructure accessible to persons with disability and 5% of the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation’s budget and proceeds from its markets is secured for them. Health, education, and all the other needs of the persons with disability will be fulfilled in the near future.”

Happiness factor

She said space is a constraint in Mumbai as the city was not planned and constructed, and hence it will take time to develop it in the right manner.

“We have started a survey which includes 25 questions for checking the happiness factor and how we can improve on it,” she added.

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Printable version | Mar 29, 2020 9:26:12 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/mumbai/mumbai-will-be-slum-free-in-four-years/article30778607.ece

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