More infrastructure to support workers in unorganised sectors in Mumbai was one of the prime demands made at the BMC’s public consultative workshop on the “informal sector”, held on Wednesday for the Mumbai Development Plan (DP) 2014-2034.
The stakeholders have also demanded transit camps for migrant labour in Mumbai, low-cost rental homes for workers residing in the city with families in the villages, and accessible affordable housing for those who come to work here with families.
Hosted by NGO Yuva with the civic body, the stakeholder groups participating in the workshop included trade unions, hawker’s associations, waste pickers associations and taxi/auto workers’ associations.
“While the BMC’s preparatory studies acknowledge that currently 70 per cent of the city’s economic growth comes from the service sector, there is no mention of the fact that 70 per cent of Mumbai’s labour force is from the unorganised sector, or is contractual labour in the service sector. This includes domestic helps, rickshaw drivers, vegetable hawkers, and others. They contribute the most to sustainable growth as they use the least resources in Mumbai, yet the studies have not addressed their needs,” said architect Aravind Unni, of Yuva.
“Areas around industrial clusters should have mixed use reservations with focus on affordable housing for informal workers who are bound to work in the area. This will reduce pressure on transport infrastructure and decrease the workers’ travelling expenditure,” Unni said.
Some of the other demands include mapping of existing markets, especially natural markets to accommodate hawkers in every ward, more CNG fuel stations for autorickshaws and taxi drivers along with extra parking lots with amenities, and decentralized waste-sorting and management centres in each ward.