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Alternate site enrages slum dwellers,activists

More than 200 families staying in Macchipir Indira Society of Maninagar have been issued notices to shift to Piplag for an alternative rehabilitation to make way for yet another infrastructure development project of the Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC).

Written by Ujjwala Nayudu | Ahmadabad |
January 7, 2009 12:20:20 am

More than 200 families staying in Macchipir Indira Society of Maninagar have been issued notices to shift to Piplag for an alternative rehabilitation to make way for yet another infrastructure development project of the Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC).

Following the decision of the Gujarat High Court,a 10-member team from the South Zone was present at the site on Tuesday to give allotments to the displaced people.

The residents of the slums were unhappy about the new arrangements and a few opposed to sign the allotment papers leading to disputes with the authorities.

The slum dwellers said that the police threatened to beat them up and asked them to sign on the allotment papers.

“They took my thumb impression on a paper and took me to a plot marked by a chalk. They said that was our plot,” said one of the slum dweller. “They told us that we will be shifted to better houses in six month,” said Meena Munara,a resident of the slums in Machhipir. Meena said she did not trust them.

M S Patel,the Deputy Commissioner of the AMC,South Zone,said: “The slum dwellers were given notices. They had appealed to the High Court which in its decision had pronounced the allotment of alternative plots for the residents.”

Patel said the affected people will be given land area of 15 by 10 feet along with Rs 5000 cash and a special vehicle for shifting.

“Here they stayed without any ownership to the land and there they have an ownership. I don’t see a need of opposition in the matter,” said Patel.

According to the Gujarat High Court orders,the AMC was asked to give alternative allotment to the affected people. However,it also specifies that of these only 49 families will be rehabilitated later to Jashodanagar where 618 houses of JNNURM scheme will be ready by Diwali next year.

The activists have opposed this decision.

Bina Jadhav from Action Aid stated: “Under an RTI,we were told that about 18,976 houses are almost ready. Instead of shifting them to farther places like Piplag,why are they not allotting them rooms in JNNURM houses?”

D Thara,the Chief Executive Officer of Ahmedabad Urban Development,said: “The JNNURM houses will be a help for those who are affected by any infrastructure project. But only 5 to 7 per cent of theses houses are reserved for this purpose.” He said the JNNURM houses are still under construction.

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