Slum Bombay: Housing Delhi 02
Director: Ralli Jacob, Rafeeq Ellias, P.K. Das; Cinematographer: Rafeeq Ellias
Duration: 00:19:06; Aspect Ratio: 1.366:1; Hue: 30.528; Saturation: 0.513; Lightness: 0.102; Volume: 0.085; Cuts per Minute: 0.680; Words per Minute: 128.746
Vijay Kamble (Sambhaji Bhagat), is interviewer, bringing housing questions from the Bombay slums to experts in Delhi.
A: If amongst the people we... the way we do; I do not know about others but we have created a lot of awareness amongst the people and now we are making multi purpose co-operative societies, for which we will get help from HUDCO, Commissioner Slum(Delhi)-Manjit Singh in regard to construction of houses. But the idea of co-operative housing society or of multi-purpose co-operative business has not developed amongst the people. The idea of co-operative does not sink amongst the people, unless that sinks in properly with whatever advantages it has or what ever disadvantages it has. This has to be explained to people and unless they understand for them this is totally foggy. You have to make these movements of co-operative systems, of housing, of industry, of cottage industry, what have you in much more simpler terms.
You can't expect a man to fill up 20 pages, you can't expect him to give a guarantor, where is he going to get a guarantor from?. He cant get a guarantor, you have to believe in him, have to look at his vocation and convince him that co-operative housing is something that he can come to. And I think that the sooner you realise this, its a part of the government's plan, its a part of their programme, its a HUDCO programme; its a Ministry of Urban Development programme, I'm sure in Maharashtra you have some kind of a programme like that; but we-the non-governmental organisations look into these plans. And we, along with the people, mind you; along the jugghi
dweller, the jhopdi
dweller, the jhopadpatti
dweller form our sangathan
(organisation) informally, very informally in the beginning which takes a lot of time, months and months... After that when it gets into their head after discussion, after fighting, in-fighting, he will take away the money; the government will not give the money; he will not do this, he will not do that-very common things. Then you come to an understanding, that look its all within your perception. All things are available to you, if you can stand up for your demands
Q: This is the government... what about other organisations involved with housing?
Real estate - private contractors, housing societies - they make houses for the rich. Ansal in Delhi, Raj Kumar too... also others, like DLF, etc. But for the economically weaker sections. There is a No Income Group. We know Middle Income Group and Upper Income Group. Low Income group. But there's also a No income group. Do you understand No income group?
Q: I can understand.
You can? And that is in majority. For No income group you have no plans. Mr. Government, Mr. Administrator, please come out with a plan for No income group. We are the ones that bring that realisation to the people - that you belong to the No income group.
Q: What if you want to provide housing to the no income group, how would that work out?
A: That no income group - they toil like donkeys - always struggling and living in huts - in rain, under the harsh sun, in shade. A baby is born and dies and nobody hears about it even. And if the news does reach people - no one cares. Poverty is a very clear and open thing. We don't care - we need this, we keep this, so that our needs are looked after. When we get realisation then we think to whom we should say and with whom should we organisations? - With people, for that we need money... but we get only little money.
Q: From where?
A: The people - they give 5,10,1,2,3,500,700,1000... rupees when begins.
Q: In my experience 5 or 10 rupees cannot make a house. I am trying to make one house since the last 4 years in our slum areas. 5,10 rupees couldn't make a house, so from where would the get money to build houses like this?
A: From this or the last year, I think, the government has made such plans, programmes that in nominal interest 4 or 5 % interest you will get loan up to 20 - 25 thousand, if you have land or they will give you place. But only when you make a cooperative society or multi purpose society, and through it you'll get it.
Q: I'm interested in this - you work on housing issues, to solve people's problems, you make cooperatives - this is one thing you have said. Second thing is how will you get rest of the money (to build)?
A: To run the organisation we get some money from social organisations.
Q: Which ones?
A: Women have social organisations like...
A: Quota Club
A: That is a women's organisation in Delhi. They feel the work we are doing like street plays, the way we communicate, we survey, we do interpersonal group discussions - that is very useful. We are teaching women, kids, leaders, community... That's the winning hearts part...
Q: Which is other organisations?
A: There's also international organisations
Q: What name?
A: SIDA, Novib... they are from... SIDA is Swedish, Novib is from Netherlands,... EMW,... from West Germany, some funds we get from them, some comes from the government, Ministry of Welfare.
Q: Keeping aside the Indian government, how much do you can you get from outside?
A: There are no standards...
Q: But still... at the least?
A: Some give 50 thousand, some give 1 lakh. some give 2 lakhs but its not fixed. They distribute some from their quota when they receive our request.
Q: The reason I'm asking... if its in lakhs.. can we...
A: Yes, now United Nations has announced that they will help us.
Q: How many lakhs will they give you?
A: We don't know anything... When it comes we'll see... we are chasing them last 3 years.
Cut, cut... its getting too...
Yea, its not into that detail.
A: Yes, The role of government vis-a-vis voluntary agency, vis-a-vis development. Very clear. Government is the biggest aid developing agency. Machines, money, bureaucracy, planned process, policy maker, is their prerogative and will remain so. What does the voluntary organisation do? One thing, the main thing the human input the ability, the capability to bring to the slum dweller the awareness, the consciousness that their problems ultimately will have to be solved with their understanding, with their recognition.
A: And in this housing becomes one of the key factors. Ultimately everybody wants a roof over their head - need place to live. The question arises - what sort of place? In one room husband, wife and 2 kids - its alright for this generation. What happens for the next generation? What happens for the generation after that? Where is the privacy? Where is that little independence of the child or of the 2 children. This is the grim scenario. The answer to the problem that we find is either convince people through economic, social, educational means that they should return back to their original place of birth from where they migrated in to Delhi which is not very easy.
A: Because back home things haven't been very green for them. So ultimately, the dilemma, the problem exists in the city. Government fulfils its condition by saying we will provide whatever little land we can, we are short of land. Agreed, you are short of land. But if you are short of land then there isn't a law in this country to say that we won't have more people coming into the city. On one side we have shortage of land. On the other side we have exodus of people coming into Delhi. You have that figure of 400 thousand people migrating to Delhi every year. Now whichever kind of housing you make, whichever kind of planning you do, whichever kind of sanitation you give, whichever kind of water system you make, whichever kind of nutrition, family planning or healthcare you make - has got to be made keeping in mind that you have so many people migrating into Delhi every year.
A: So effectively in the year 2000 in the 21st century if we multiply from now 4,00,000 people every year in the next ten years we will have something like 40 lakhs - 4 million people in the city of Delhi. Who has made plans for them? My hope lies only in the fact that as a voluntary organisation we can explain to people that they should by all means try to go back to their places of birth, try to regenerate their agriculture income.
A: I think the answer lies in to my mind in telling this poor slum dwellers that with the kind of shortages they face in this city, with the kind of lack of privacy, lack of amenities, environmentally, physically, even economically it would be viable for them to go back to their place of birth and insist upon development of their own village and of their own town. Because Delhi is bursting, it cannot take anymore. And government plans and programmes are good to a point but it cannot take on responsibility of 4,00,000 people coming into the city every year.
A: It will stink, it will be full of insanitation. And housing is concrete, housing is something which is 3 dimensional and you need land. In Delhi we are exhausted of land. We do not have land. And if we packed people like sardines into one room 5 of them, 6 of them, mother, father, grandmother, grandfather, sisters, cousins as Indian families are - they're all joint families - it will create hell, in that one tenement. Toilets are scarce, Bathrooms are scarce, washrooms are scarce in sanitation galore. It affects them, its affects us.
A: One must admit that ten years ago the problem was not seen by the government in the focus that it is seen now. There are many more bureaucrats in the system who are trying to energise this whole system of housing. And they don't look at housing in an isolated manner I am glad because we don't look at housing as housing just. We look at it as a part an integral part of the entire development process. And unless you can tell people that they can take a breather from this kind of life that they are dealing in Delhi into a better atmosphere things are not going to change very much.
A: However, Anjana you might like to say something on this? Because you deal with housing, you have been organising cooperatives in Alaknanda and other places.
Anjana: Well yes, in the last two years now the housing problem or problem of accommodating in these... all the Jhuggi
dwellers and others, providing them some form of housing, has been taken up by the government and the slum commissioner's office. I only feel as we go along that they there is a limited amount that they can do when you see the numbers that we have to deal with.
Interview with Anjana
Anjana; And I think an NGO or voluntary organisations can play a very definite role in this sort of a problem. Once they are sure or they know that the government programme is such and such, their limitations are such and such, and this is what they can provide. I think the government has to be human and yet it can't be taken over by the fact that if there are 100 thousand people, all the 100 thousand have to be housed, because they don't have the space for it. And if they try to do that then we are getting into these problem of you know - shortage of space, not hygienic houses, small area and there is going to be no control about how many people live in one room.
Anjana: There is never any control even in these slums. I mean when it comes to getting a house from the government the family is going to say "10 square yards! that too little for us." But the government has decided alright this has got so much land, we got so many families and we can give 10 sq yards to each person because already they are living probably in 8 sq yards - and a whole family and they don't bother about it. They will live over the bed, under the bed anywhere. So I think it is important that we have to work out parameters taking into consideration how the people are, their needs are very important and hear the NGO or the organisation that are working amongst the people or people themselves are to be consulted, and a pattern developed and the government of this obviously going to provide this because the land belongs to the government.
Anjana: Or they sell it out to cooperatives or whatever situation they do, then they make out a programme and its a specific programme. Then the NGO is there to arouse a consciousness, to educate, to say that alright you've come to live in an urban situation this is what you can achieve.
Anjana: And to achieve this then this is how you have to develop yourself, or you have to work within or live within these parameters. If we are going to improve the quality of life. Otherwise whatever you do will never be enough and in a sense I think we are also not helping the people because we raise expectations about - if you come into the city the government will give you a land. You just have to make your stake, you put up a... a little shack, you put up a charpai
, you put up a dari
and the next thing you know you can demand from the government - I need a house or I need space.
Anjana: So taking all these considerations in to mind I think it is important - the educational aspect or in terms of how if you move from a rural situation into an urban situation you have to live within the parameters of that. And that they very well understand they come first because they take any little space and they live there.
Anjana: But when it comes to providing housing for them we can't really say - 'alright if you can live in 8 sq yards that's all you need.' We want to improve their quality of life, we want to see that they're living in hygienic conditions, we want to protect the city in certain civic norms. But so we have to take all these norms in consideration and but we need a definite programme. a definite thing to work with. Unfortunately most of the time I feel that we are trying to do something but a lot of considerations come in that you have to provide it for everybody, you've got to have this, you've go to have that, so we are going to provide them sub-standard, situations