Dharavi negotiated by the people and enterprises present

Dharavi is located in Mumbai, Maharashtra, India. It is the largest slum of Asia and the third largest slum of the world. It covers an area of about 2.1 sq. kilometre, holding the population of about 7,00,000. Its population density is 2,77,136 / sq. km. it is also one of the densest area of the world. This slum was founded in 1883 during the colonial rule ad it rapidly grew in parts because of expansion of factories. This is the reason, Dharavi is currently a multi-religious, multi-ethnic, and diverse settlements. Dharavi has an active informal economy in which numerous households are employed in leather factories, textiles and pottery is one of the common activities practices inside the slum.  The slum is to be redeveloped and the way through which the redevelopment has to take place has to be discussed. The Dharavi Redevelopment Project (DRP) states that the redevelopment has to take place rehousing and resettling the current population of Dharavi. There is a serious concern that the commercial builders would minimize the cost of rehousing so as to maximize their own profit. There is no clear evidence that who all would be resettled and who would be left out, people have a fear that many households and business enterprises stood to the loss of their homes and place of work.  Concerned about the redevelopment, Jockin Arputhram, the head of National Slum Dwellers Federation, lead an open letter to government and the builders interested in redevelopment of the slum. He asked a partnership between the builder and government a partnership or else he promised to call on a strike.  Dharavi is an important case for Mumbai’s future development form a point of view that did people of Dharavi got benefit from form such development or not. In addition, the way in which the redevelopment of Dharavi effect the city’s future planning to deal with slum dwellers, at a time when real estate has so much capital pouring in Mumbai, in response to the increased demand of commercial space and high housing. Also the plan of development could be shown to the people that how the development would take place, and it could also be developed and negotiated by the people and enterprises present there. If this as possible in such a dynamic city, it would be really a big example for the Asian cities and would have a great relevance.  This daily approach allows us share minor details of the project and of the negotiation between the different groups of people. Two groups have been active in questioning DRP and suggesting valid approaches. The first group is called Concerned Citizens of Dharavi, whose chairman is Mr Sukhtankar. Mr Sukhtankar is a retired chief minister of Maharashtra in May 2007. This group raised many concerns about DRP. It was addressed to CM of Maharashtra state because Daharavi redevelopment project was managed by the state government. The members of second group included the residents of Dharavi. It was organised under two grouping. The initial group was Dharavi Bachao Aandolan (Save Dharavi Movement). It was a collation of different sets of association which came together to protest for Dharavi. Other was Dharavi Vikas Yogna (Dharavi development committee). This was a federation cooperatives and business leaders who were formed in 1987 when vision to redevelop Dharavi was announced. This committee was a result of earlier enumerations undertaken by the alliance of SPARC. The earlier enumeration shows that there were 81,000+ structures and even more than 1,25,000 households. In last decade, these two group came together and now they will be functioning together for the redevelopment of Dharavi in the favour of people. They have tried to increase the pressure created on government. Moreover, they have tried to highlight the fact that not only the poor have strong objection on the Dharavi Redevelopment Project but also the other citizens of the city have objections.  The following is a summary of an extract from the letter written to the CM of Maharashtra, followed by the issues raised. The letter was written on the behalf of several organizations – which included academic institutions and NGOs – as well as on the behalf of different individuals who are concerned with the Dharavi Redevelopment Project. In the letter, they listed the project issues which concerned people, raised certain objections to the present Dharavi Redevelopment Project, asked many questions and make certain recommendation as to a future roadmap. Very few people living in the slum are unaware about the Dharavi Redevelopment project and those who are aware complete resist it. Some of the issues mentioned are mentioned below:  ? LEGAL ISSUES: The plan is, in effect, an attempt to implement the prior development plan, but with the change in FSI. It is absolutely wrong to follow existing development plans, which are completely out of date. There are so many changes taking place in dharavi redevelopment plan which includes in the total population living there, the number structures there, the kind of existing activities there, and the increase in connectivity of dharavi with rest of the Mumbai.  ? SURVEY AND DATA COLLECTION: One of the key issues of Dharavi Redevelopment Project is that who all are the people who are going to be rehoused and what provisions will be made for their enterprises and workspaces. There is a whole lot of anomaly in the total population of the slum. The data presented by the Slum Rehabilitation Authority (SRA) about the total population is completely different from the Census data of Dharavi. SRA claims that the total population of Dharavi is 57,000. But the basis for clamming such statement is unknown. Moreover the basis for estimation the number of people to resettle is also unclear. For example: a person of family have to give a proof that they are residents of Dharavi in the beginning of 1995. Hence, if the size of dharavi population is unclear, then it will be really difficult to plan for the redevelopment. The total structures in dharavi is not defined, and their various purposes are not known. There is for sure the need of an infrastructure survey for the slum to access the existing conditions and the extent and nature of deficiencies. There is no detailed survey report that shows the detailed topographical data of the slum. The survey is really important because most of the area of Dharavi is flood prone. Hence such survey may be essential for establishing a proper drainage system. Moreover soil condition is very critical for planning for redevelopment.  ? PROJECTION STUDIES AND PLANNING STANDARDS: Since the developers are granted to increase floor space index, there will be increase in the population of dharavi, and hence this increasing population is not being considered. Hence, the implications for the required land use distribution, amenities, and traffic have never been carefully assessed or understood.   ? PLANNING DESIGN AND DISSEMINATION: First of all an existing land survey has to be taken and then the proposed plan is to be displayed to the public. This is not only a law buy also an efficient method to involve public and concerned organization in the redevelopment of dharavi. The plan should also give the data about how the existing population is going to be resettled in the 65% of the land. People are unaware about where they are going to be resettled like if they were resettled in the poor low lying flood prone area. There are various arguments about the increase in FSI, as greater the FSI more the number of floors the builder can construct and great the profit the builder could bid. The problem is that with increase in FSI, there will be more number of dwelling unit and hence more population hence reducing the open space and space for amenities her head. The government has to balance out between density and the profit in order to achieve a good human living standard.  ? ISSUES REGARDING THE LACK OF CLARITY OF PURPOSE OF DRP: Other development schemes show that a lower FSI would generate very low revenue and the development would break down financially. But the main concern of the government and the builder should not be the generation of profit. In continuity of this argument, the FSI should not be changed. One of the argument for increasing the FSI of Dharani is to attract people to such a difficult area. Dharavi is being developed as a township, and being its good connectivity characteristics, the builders could get a huge profit even without increasing the bonus FSI. Hence, a detailed financial planning has to be taken in order to get the need and extent to which the FSI is to be increased.  ? LACK OF CLARITY REGARDINGINSTITUTIONAL ROLES: The Dharavi Redevelopment Project is a project sanctioned by government in partnership with the private builders. It is not mentioned that how the government will ensure that the maintenance charges has to be paid by the developer and moreover the maintenance of elevator is to be done by the builder for a particular years. Moreover the plans also provides various institutions like schools, hospitals etc. the problem is that who is going to provide the funds to run those centers and who is going to make them affordable to the poor people. A notice must be taken from the builder solving the above mentioned issues.   ? ISSUES REGARDING THE ABSENCE OF COMMUNITY PARTISPATION: It is felt that there is no room for public participation in Dharavi Redevelopment Project. According to the law, under democracy a person has right to know about his rights. Here the peplum have no idea about anything except the sector plan. People don’t know where they have to locate themselves during redevelopment, what is the criterion for the rehousing, and where will the get the rehoused. Moreover, there are some families which are really large and providing just a 225 sq. feet space is inadequate for human purpose. There is a request to Maharashtra government to recheck the rules and give rights to public to participate in the process.   GOVERNEMENT’S KICKBACK: After receiving the letter, in late May 2007 the government of Maharashtra published an advertisement inviting all the international builders to submit their formal interest I Dharavi Redevelopment Project.  Slowly the opposition of the redevelopment project became more visible in June 2007, when black flags were hosted on the electricity poles around the city. On June 23, about 15,000 people marched peacefully from Dharavi to Maharashtra housing and area development office, which was a distance of about 2 kilometres. Many activists and residents joined this moment. This moment served various moments. First, it was a clear symbol of objection for what the state was planning. Second, just to show the power of the people of Dharavi. The march could have caused a great chaos but it was organised in such a way so that it would not cause any harm to the city flow. There is a video clip of this moment which is uploaded with the title of “SAVE DHARAVI”.  There was a letter written to the prime minister of India on 19th July 2007. This letter was signed by 23 well knowledge people from all over the world, and anchored by Professor Arjun Appadurai. This letter then listed some of the main points that were there in the earlier letter: ? The procedure that has to be followed in drawing up the Dharavi Redevelopment Plan was not followed. ? No survey was conducted, let it be for population or land, hence creating disrupt to the lives of hundreds of thousands of people. ? A lack of planning studies, which creates problem as there were no standards for housing mentioned. ? Local residents were unaware about the core of plan. ? Increase in FSI will lead to high population density. ? No plan about linking the proposed infrastructure with that of the public. ? There was a fear that if Dharavi Redevelopment Project was implemented, thousands of people would lose their livelihood.  In late august 2007, a senior government, Dr Chandrasekhar, was appointed on a special duty to take Dharavi Redevelopment Plan under control. He convinced the need to take a survey for survey of Dharavi, which was the first and foremost recommendation of all the concerned citizens. He first commissioned this and then invited all the builders to come up with their presentation. Dr Chandrasekhar then called up a meeting of all the concern members of Dharavi to discuss their issues and problems, and he told them that he would keep in mind all the problems and said that he would keep them updated with development process. Before meeting, a tender was given for the survey of Dharavi. The survey consisted of all structures, and a socioeconomic survey identifying all the activities occurring there. SPARS was given the opportunity to undertake the work, initially it refused because of the unrealistic time table, unacceptable format and inadequate budget. Many groups urged SPARC to help. The residents’ association and local political group of Dharavi demanded that SPARC, Mahila Milan and the National Slum Dwellers association should undertake the survey. In December 2007, the solution was drawn where the survey was conducted jointly by both SPARC and MASHAL. SPARC would work with Dharavi’s inhabitants and local community organizations.     CONCLUSION: As we move into this new space of undertaking the study, we are asked whether the state will truly listen, and whether we are equipped for conveying both the state and group desires. We ourselves make these inquiries. Actually genuine improvement mediations are constantly high hazard exercises. To abstain from taking part in these way to resign the obligations and commitments of the individuals who have the trust of poor people to be straightforward specialists between standard improvement and the goals of poor people. Having acknowledged this test we know we are currently dedicated to remaining in this procedure, alongside the occupants of Dharavi.

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