With an eye on the polls, the Maharashtra government announces several steps for those covered under Mumbai’s slum redevelopment projects. But stalled projects and an alleged pro-builder bias are undoing any good intent
REDOING SHANTYTOWN: A swathe of Mumbai’s Dharavi slum, with tenement highrises for residents in its midst. (Photo: Milind Shelte)
With the Lok Sabha and state assembly polls in 2024 drawing near, the Eknath Shinde-led Shiv Sena-Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) government in Maharashtra is going all-out to woo the powerful slum-dweller vote bank in Mumbai. The state government has decided to allot apartments in slum redevelopment schemes at Rs 2.5 lakh to residents of shanties that have come up between 2000 and 2011. It is estimated that this will cover around 1.6-1.8 million people as their slums are redeveloped in the coming years. Slum-dwellers whose houses were constructed before 2000 are legally protected and eligible for free housing. Many are housed in 300 square feet flats under Slum Rehabilitation Authority (SRA) projects.