The people of Iambi are known for their arduous yet cosmopolitan lifestyles. The maximum city houses Sais’s most prolific film and elevation industry, Plywood and has seen it blossom through the decades. Countless people have made it big here – be it through business or film. Entrepreneurs flock here, budding talents Join the rat race to fame while the working class laboriously toils in their race against time to make ends meet. The city has a large migrant population, major from within the state and a third from other states.
Reasons for migration include marriage, the trend of rural-urban migrations, search for Jobs, education and for many, a desire to live and make a name for themselves the City Of Dreams or Mayfair. What is worth noting is that most of Mamba’s development has been driven by its population growth, mostly due to migration. The city is currently the fourth most populous city in the world with a population of 20. 5 million. However, a large number of this population lives in slums, shawls, on rent and other low class residential areas like villages within the city.
The South Iambi area has all major commercial complexes, Government Offices, Secretariats, Bank Headquarters and Corporate Offices. Due to extremely high real estate prices in this district, people have no option but to stay in the distant suburbs of Iambi and daily ravel long distances to reach their work places situated in South Bombay. The public transport system thus plays a vital role in the widespread expansion & economic progress of the city by giving its people the mobility required to achieve the same.
A lot has changed for the City of Dreams in the last few decades. Development has come to be many things such as A-grade residential complexes, malls that house the world within them, cozy bohemian cafes and bookshops tucked in the winding lanes of Old Bombay, highways and flyovers to help beat the city pumping traffic, defunct tone mills intensely developed into commercial hubs and lately but more Project. The city of Iambi is spread over an area of 603. Km. The public transport system is thus the lifeline of this large and densely populated city.
It includes the Iambi Suburban Railway, Barbarianism Electric Supply and Transport (BEST) buses, black-and-yellow meter taxis, auto rickshaws and ferries. However, as per a 2008 survey, the suburban railway and BEST bus services together accounted for about 88% of the passenger traffic. The 1 50-year old Iambi rail network covers a vast expanse of 319 route kilometers. 191 rakes of 9-car and 12-car compositions are utilized to run a total of 2,226 train services in the city. On an average, 7. 4 million passenger trips are made daily at an average distance of 25 km per trip and 22 million passenger trips are made daily in general.
During peak hours, about 4,500 passengers travel in a 9-car rake as against a rated carrying capacity of Just 1,700 passengers. Shocking figures released by the Iambi Railway Police Commission in 2011 reveal the number of fatalities on Mamba’s local train network. 805 commuters lost their lives and 867 were injured in train-related accidents. On an average, 3,000 deaths per year are related to local trains. A major number of fatalities are due to people falling of crowded trains or injuring themselves in the event of boarding or De-boarding crowded trains during rush hours.
Given that local trains are essential for a speedy crossover of large populations over long distances, the time-starved Embarrass welcomed the Iambi Monorail and Iambi Metro projects. Since that East-West connectivity is poor under the Iambi Suburban Railway (which mainly provides only a North-South connectivity), Line 1 of Iambi Metro serves this purpose and significantly reduces the Journey time from Overseas to Stoppard by 50 minutes (from 71 minutes to 21 minutes). Around 16 trains with four to six coaches each will ferry around 25,000 passengers in a singe direction during peak hours.
Along with this, it facilitates interchange between the Iambi Suburban Railway and the Iambi Metro at Andrei and Stoppard stations. The other corridors to be built are the Carhop-Band-Mulled route, the Collar-Band-SEEPS line and the Carhop-Disarm line. The air-conditioned coaches have seating along the windows with most space left for standing passengers, thereby increasing the capacity to accommodate passengers at peak hours. As of today not only does the rail system UT so do mostly all major routes and meaner of transportation face a lot of overcrowding and traffic.
Chaotic traffic conditions, narrow lanes and encroachment upon main roads by hawkers and vendors have slowed vehicular traffic on the roads. Efforts made to improve the situation didn’t bear much fruit. Thus, the need of the hour called for initiatives with long-term benefits to ameliorate the situation for daily commuters. The MUTE is a project formulated by the Iambi Metropolitan Region Development Authority (AMERADA) to bring about improvement in the traffic and transport situation in the Iambi, with the assistance of the World Bank.
The US $ 1 1. 24 Billion Project is spread over three phases – Phase I was duly completed in 2011; Phase II (due to be completed in 2014) consists of 11 projects with a World Band Loan of US $ 347. 62 million; Phase Ill (scheduled to be completed in 2031) consists of two main projects expected to bring connectivity to International Airport and the installation of a new suburban rail corridor between Viral and Panel passing through Visa and Diva Road. The MUTE envisages investment in suburban traffic management activities.
In order to resolve the various resettlement issues, a operate and parallel project called Iambi – Resettlement & Rehabilitation (R&R) was launched with the World Bank assistance. The principal goal of this project is “to assist in actual R & R of the persons affected by MUTE and other infrastructure investment by providing them with the meaner to improve, or at least restore, their former living standards. ” Also the income-earning capacity and production level of the project-affected people (Pass) have to be maintained on the same level as they were during the pre-project period.
THE FLIPPED While the both of the above-mentioned projects aim at impacting the lives of most people in a phenomenal way, it has on the flipped led to a series of unfortunate events in the lives of the more economically marginalia sections of society I. E. The lower middle class and the urban poor. Iambi has a relatively high population density of approximately 30,000 people per km. This population includes a dabbled, a stock-broker, a diamond merchant, a Plywood producer, a Jobless mill worker or even the local panatela.
For each, the daily obstacles are different and for each, development in tangent with easing their lifestyles is a dream waiting to be fulfilled. According to State Government data, over 50% of Mamba’s population lives in slums encroaching on prime land; 70% of its households (including slums) live in one-room tenements and 18% in two-room structures. Whether the current redevelopment situation in Iambi works with these percentages in mind (considering this is the category of people on which the city functions) is highly doubted by many.
Development projects taken up by the government in both the public and the private sector have resulted in large-scale involuntary displacement of the lower strata of society in keeping with the compulsive Land Acquisition Act, 1894. Many have lost their agricultural lands, natural habitats in forests or by the coast and their homes & livelihoods in the bargain. Questions have been raised against the sovereign state that is currently hell-bent on imposing development without restoring meager sources of sustenance of the affected people.
This is particularly relevant in the context of the numerous resettlement and rehabilitation schemes taken up by the AMERADA, like the AMERADA complex in Kangaroo. EXPERIENCES ON THE FIELD: AMERADA COMPLEX, KANJI-JAR ROAD, KANGAROO This research was carried out at the AMERADA complex situated in Kangaroo, West. Kanji Mark is a suburb in east central Iambi. Kangaroo station falls on the central line of the Iambi Suburban Railway. This is the main access point for TIT Bombay, Harridans Gardens and other locations in Poppa, which is not accessible by train.
The area has developed and continues to develop into a business district. The suburb has formerly been home to industrial establishments like Crampon Greaves and the Indian Smelting and Refined Company Limited. Kangaroo is the also the starting point for the Gershwin-Vigor Link Road OVAL) which connects the Eastern and Western Express Highways aimed at opening up connectivity in the burrs. While much of the development in this area may be attributed to its strategic location & proximity to Poppa, it is primarily inhabited by people from the middle class, lower middle class and lower classes of society.
The AMERADA complex living there are originally slum dwellers. The complex was erected on land owned by Nicholas Primal India Ltd. In exchange for tax benefits on real restate in other parts of the city. Not more than 200 meters from the station, the complex consists of a cluster of 12 buildings in rows. Each building had 7 floors. Each floor consecutively had 24 rooms. Each building thus had 186 rooms in addition to 6 rooms on the ground floor. Therefore, each building had 192 rooms. One room had a carpet area of 225 square Ft. That consisted of a kitchen, a toilet, a shower area and one room.
On an average, a family of 4-6 members occupied each room; taking a minimum occupancy of 4 people per room, it can be estimated that each building easily housed 1400 people and the entire complex housed up to 11,500 residents (probably more). The population of this complex consisted of people hailing from various ethnic and religious backgrounds, both upper caste and lower caste. There were Hindus, Muslims, Christians, Marathoners, Guajarati, Brahmins, Dalais, etc. – all living, struggling, celebrating and adjusting with each other. All of these people belonged to the lower middle class and the urban poor of the city.
I came to know of the Kangaroo AMERADA settlement through a family acquaintance, Ms. Suburb Penumbra, who had previously carried out social work to help many of the residents from Stoppard settle in the new environment. She mentioned it as an AMERADA Slum Rehabilitation Complex that had been converted into a shanty by its inhabitants out of lack of knowledge and understanding of how to live in a building. The complex largely housed Project Affected People (Pass) from areas such as Stoppard, Gangland, Gorgon, Andrei, Convivial, Baronial, Bingham, Charity Magna, etc. Ho had been shifted due to Metro Rail Projects, road-widening projects, highway projects and others that are part of the MUTE. At first sight, the complex came off as a more progressive version of the regular shanty. The boundary walls of the complex a little over 5 feet in height and were broken at places. From the outside, the buildings seemed to be poorly maintained in terms of both cleanliness and appearance. Litter shrouded all areas off the main walkway in the complex, and garbage dropped from the floors above lay in piles between buildings. The drainage canals at the boundary walls were broken and exposed at most places.
Through Ms. Penumbra, I was scheduled to meet a lady by the name of Rehashed Ramada Chimney & her family in building no. 8, whose family was one of the many relocated from the slums in Stoppard. She had further agreed to introduce me to some more families shifted from the same area. In heat of the afternoon, many residents were out of their buildings chatting under the sun. Children played and youngsters hung about. Personally, blending in with the surroundings came as quite a challenge to me. That most people around stopped what they were doing to stare at me while I made my way to Building No. Only made me feel more out of place and at some point, intimidated and vulnerable. However, once inside the building, an unexpected air of nonchalance helped ease me for the task ahead. Rehashed and her family were made to shift to Kangaroo 9 years ago. Previously, they lived in slum settlements on a hillock in Stoppard. Their area was redeveloped for the implementation of the Iambi Metro Project as a result of which the entire talented was given R in the AMERADA Complex at Kangaroo, which is one station away from Stoppard by train and less than 5 km away by road. Researcher’s husband works at a mall in Stoppard.
His work did not suffer in any way cause of the dislocation. However, the children’s school had to be changed. This was a smooth process that They told us that they had to change their children’s school when they shifted. It wasn’t difficult at all – it happened very smoothly. They only had to give in an application at the Municipal School for a transfer to the Kanji mark branch. The entire family was, as contrary to popular assumption, very happy with the event of being dislocated and resettled. 9 years ago, the authorities simply told them that they were being shifted to a building because of the metro rail project.
There they would get their own room, in their own name as compared to living on land that did not belong to them, in slums. The rehabilitation packet given to them was a 225 square Ft. Room in a building that would be registered in their name; they were told that they would have to pay for their electricity and water consumption along with a monthly maintenance. When asked about their initial reaction to this package, they said they gladly agreed to this; firstly, because they were being upgraded to a building from a slum; secondly, because the space they were being given in exchange was much bigger than the space they currently occupied.
Their house in the slums in Stoppard was as big as their present kitchen. They spoke of this fact with a lot of Joy. The construction of the complex was complete when the authorities approached them the first time. The shifting process wasn’t a problem for most as all were given ample time to shift and Kangaroo was only 10 minutes away, by both train and bus. Many were so thrilled at the idea of living in a concrete building with their own room that they shifted over night upon receiving their allotment. Researcher’s family took around a month to shift.
They did not lose any belongings in the bargain, only the place that was their home for 15 years. Leaving wasn’t easy but it also wasn’t bad. Their lifestyle changed for the better at Kangaroo. The convenience of being situated at a stone’s throw from the station and the bus stop was unparalleled. The connectivity here was much better than where they lived in Stoppard, which was quite a distance from the station. They valued the regular availability of water here. In their slums at Stoppard, they would have to wait in a line of 300-400 people to fill water from 2 taps at a given time.
Water was available only at certain hours. Here, not only was water available at all times but the water was clean. In their building specifically, each household now had their own pipelines – an initiative taken by their building’s secretary. In case anyone was using water on the flat immediately above theirs, their supply would not be compromise, as was the case in most of the other buildings that had common pipelines for every column of rooms. Their buildings secretary also had a boring line installed, which now runs by popular decision in the morning.
This water is also very clean as it is ground water. The situation however was not so bright for the people of Shenanigan in building no. 12. Mothers often worry whether the muddy liquid trickling through the tap is safe for their children to drink, when worker-turned secretary of the building, recalls how one of the plastic water tanks on the roof burst two months after moving in. The builders, Primal Holdings Ltd. Replaced the 15,000 litter tank at a cost of Two months later, another tank burst followed by a third, and a fourth.
The residents asked Primal to build a concrete tank in an effort to ask for durable equipment while they could (Appraisal’s warranty expired in two years). Despite desperate efforts, this eventually did not happen. Coming back to Researcher’s story – that each room had it’s own toilet and bathing area (separately) was also extremely convenient. In their slums, there were shared washrooms – 6 or 7 of them – that were not only in a bad condition but also very tricky to access since they were located on the top of the hill. Battling the monsoons in slums was the ultimate challenge.
Every rainy season, all households would spend at least RSI. 00/= replacing the sheets on their roofs. During the monsoons, people would often slip on the slopes leading to their homes and the washrooms. Rehashed very happily revealed that she hardly received any guests at home in Stoppard because of their living conditions there – their home was situated on a steep slope that was tedious and unpleasant to climb as the surroundings were dirty. In Kangaroo, they often have guests at home. They were no longer people who lived in ‘Chough-Shoppers’. This was definitely a social step-up.
In the earlier slum settlement, there wasn’t equality in terms of a standard of living. Some people had better houses of cement and some had dwellings of mud and plastic. Some had larger spaces while some lived in smaller shanties. However, in this complex, everyone has the same living spaces, same facilities and therefore, the same socio- economic status that comes with it as well. In a way, the inequalities were diluted. While a lot of families were upgraded to a better standard of living in the new AMERADA facility, not all could take advantage of this blessing, as rightfully expressed by Researcher’s neighbor.
She narrated the incident of an old lady who earlier stayed n the slum alone and worked in the neighboring areas, found it extremely taxing to travel alone to and from Kanji mark to Stoppard everyday to earn a living, especially since she had to do this alone. She thought it better to give up her place in the complex on rent for around a month and live on rent elsewhere in Stoppard. Shifting to Kangaroo would have adversely affected her livelihood. Researcher’s neighbor added to the list of benefits when she spoke of the safety of the area. Her family felt very safe living here.
They said that their daughters could come home late at night- 1 or 2 o’clock and nothing would happen to them. The locality was good and while it did have some unfriendly elements like gangsters, they usually left one alone if they meant no harm to them and if they seemed to have no business with them. She added that their current building has a very good foundation too. Technicians get very harrowed while having to drill through the walls for any work. On the flipped of this very bright picture is the reality of economics involved in living in a societal complex.
Residents now had higher electricity bills given higher electricity consumption. Where earlier they would pay RSI. 200/- for electricity, they now had to pay around RSI. 00/- a month. Some households in the building had to shell out up to RSI. 3,500/- a month, as they had more plug points installed in their rooms which originally came with only 2 plug points. In their slum house, each house nothing else. Maintenance charges were also levied in this complex. They now had to pay around RSI. 300/- per month for maintenance which had been hiked by RSI. 100/=, an event many were not mentally prepared for.
Now with the hike in property tax, a further hike in maintenance charges is anticipated. An appalling series of incidents took place 8-10 years ago, when the shifting process had Just begun for most. Upon arrival, families received electricity bills amounting up to 9,000/-. Many didn’t have this kind of money and did not even consume that much electricity to begin with. When they approached the authorities regarding this glitch, the authorities merely insisted that the bill had to be paid as the meter may have been running all the while, irrespective of whether they had shifted in or not. The electricity was provided by Reliance.
To pay this bill, some families sold many belongings including their jewelry. Some who didn’t have the meaner to arrange for the large amount actually old their flats for around 3 Lacks and moved back to their villages or started living on rent elsewhere in the city. A similar incident has not taken place since then. It seemed to be was a one-time thing after which residents have been billed normally. Many of the residents in the AMERADA complex from Stoppard felt that had they been provided rehabilitation in Stoppard itself, it would have been better for them financially today as the property rates there are better.
Currently, their home in Kangaroo was priced at around 22 Lacks, while today the same property would have easily been valued at around 35 Lacks in Stoppard. The buildings secretary Mr… Added, who is also resided in the slums of Stoppard earlier, sees felt the impact of dislocation in a much darker light. For him, living in a building was a dream that did get fulfilled in the process of resettlement but has also compromised the quality of life he enjoyed in his earlier settlement. His livelihood has not been affected by dislocation – commuting to work takes only ten minutes longer now.
He gives many reasons to explain his dissatisfaction with the AMERADA R&R schemes. Mr… Added was not happy with the authorities as they made a lot of empty promises and never keep their word. Part of the rehabilitation packet included the Maria’s offer to recondition the entire complex once. He reveals, “The rooms were not registered in our names until 7 years later. In 201 5, the AMERADA will transfer the buildings to us. Every now and then, they take bonds from our society that have their side of the agreement sorted but they only gave us a letter in return.
They did not give us a bond from their side and did not even do the reconditioning work. It has been almost a decade now! If they don’t do the work by 201 5, then the work will never be done. This is not what they promised us. They never said they would not operate with us at all. Ideally, the society, the committee and the builder should be in harmony for a peaceful existence but we are not even close to that. ” One thing that Pass were not told about the package was that they would only have the rights to sell or lease out their space after 10 years in 2015.
By the time they were informed of this, many had already sold their spaces to make a quick buck. Some people had done this before allotment – in slums notified under the Slum Redevelopment Scheme (SURD), residents sold their huts for a few lacks of rupees, thus effectively transferring their right too 225 sq. Ft. Lat under the scheme to the buyer. He didn’t speak of the buildings construction too proudly. The building had C grade construction work. Monsoons. The ceiling in Researcher’s kitchen was covered with plastic throughout the year.
She did not find the need to mention this as a problem in our conversations until Mr… Added brought up the point. According to Added, the leakage was so prevalent in each room because the structure wasn’t cemented and sealed properly. Most of the walls and floor Just had mud in between the surfaces. The wiring done in the building is off such bad quality that the plastic coating around the wires had elated in most places and no authority came up to replace them or look into the problem. “We had to get everything done ourselves.
They have done a temporary Job (causal km’) and dumped us here from our original homes and have not even given a thought to the quality of facilities that are needed. Earlier we lived in slums that were spread out over a distance horizontally, this is nothing more than a vertical settlement of slums,” said the Secretary, who very often felt the burden of the poor construction work while looking into maintenance issues. He expected the maintenance to increase to RSI. ,OHO/- per month, once the property tax increases. “So right now everyone is very happy but later on it will be very difficult.
Nobody realizes this. ” The AMERADA did their bit of shifting all the dislocated people into a building but the authority doesn’t seem to realize that not everyone knows how a society works. People living on the ground floor of every building have to bear with so much garbage around them as those living on floors above throw their garbage out of the windows. The buildings cleaners do all they can to keep the premises clean. When residents living on all floors are requested not to litter, they do not adhere. This sensibility has to be instilled. It cannot Just be taken for granted.
Besides, a lot of people staying here live here on rent and why would they care? ” People who live on a different line, like those who were relocated here from Baronial & Convivial, simply rented out their spaces or sold their rooms as living in Kangaroo, so far away from their workplace did not suit them. “The authorities should have had assassination drives and educational camps on how to go about such stuff,” he says looking back at the times that followed the relocation of his settlement. Fortunately, Added wasn’t lone in his concern over the inappropriate resettlement of PAP across the city.
The World Bank suspended its funding for MUTE for a period of six months in 2006 as the financial body felt the new colonies set up for Pass were fast turning into vertical slums due to poor management of garbage and lack of awareness among the tenements. Robert Cowlicks arrival in Iambi 6 years ago led to much emphasis being laid on Community Environment Management Programmers (CAMP) effective implementation. The objective of mechanisms such as the Resettlement Action Plan (RAP) and CAMP is to ensure that not only is the adverse impact of R & R minimized UT also that the quality of life of Pass is improved.
The idea of CAMP is to breathe a new life in the surroundings of Pass. The rehabilitation site in Kangaroo was Maria’s pilot-project, which was to be replicated at other rehabilitation after successful experiment there. Lack of cleanliness, indiscipline in garbage-dumping, poor maintenance of society premise, lack of awareness about power and water supply, and sewage system are the major problem that are to be addressed under this project. However, no effort was made in this direction by the authorities as shared by Mr… Added.
If efforts were made, they were done so by Nags working for Relocation to Kangaroo has compromised their access to medical facilities, which are not easily available in the vicinity. Families often travel to Stoppard to avail the same, which becomes very tedious in severe and urgent cases. However, this is one thing Added and his people feel they cannot complain about. According to the MAIDA Rule, PAP must be given rehabilitation within 5 km of their original place of residence. If the case is otherwise, the authorities must take responsibility and bear all livelihood expenses and provide them with Jobs.
People relocated from Stoppard were given accommodation within the 5 km radius as stipulated by the authority, so they felt they had to adjust. According to them, the only people who have a right to complain in such situations are those shifted from Baronial and Convivial. While everyone in his building is largely happy with the R & R outcome, families that have been shifted from Baronial and Convivial are adversely affected, as they were given allotments at a great distance, by road and train, from where they earlier lived.
Many lost their Jobs in the bargain and were not even provided new Jobs by the authorities, as promised to them. None of their expenses were reimbursed by the authorities that were obligated to do so. What pinched their pockets the most was the increased travel expenses by 90% in commuting from home to work & school. This increase coupled with an increased spending on electricity, water and maintenance put them through extremely stressful times, especially when most of the households had no income for the first few months after resettlement for the many who lost their Jobs. Mr…
Added and the families shifted from Baronial were the few who had been given smaller spaces in exchange for what they previously had. The latter resided in what hey described as “high class shawls” on the main highway. They were made to move as the highway had to be expanded. Another thing that changed for Added at the AMERADA Complex was atmosphere of solidarity. He personally felt that humanity dwindled and people now only kept to themselves. Where earlier everyone knew what was happening in each one’s house, now given the concrete walls and solid doors, everyone Just keeps to themselves.
No one knows what goes on behind closed doors. Now, the only two days that are collectively celebrated by the entire society are Independence Day and Republic Day. In conversation, he brings out the challenges hat came with living amongst people from different areas. “These 12 buildings are as good as 12 villages of people from different castes and religions”, he said. The dominant elements of each area found themselves in the same space – this led to many ego clashes. Living together posed threats for his family in more than one way. The first four buildings are inhabited by people from Other Backward Classes (Bobs) and Dalais.
He said, “They Just live differently. Even though I don’t have half of what a family like theirs has, I live in a better way. They have bad habits; most of the sons of their families are drunkards. Since we all live together, our kids mix with their kids and our kids have taken to drinking and partying after them. If we say anything to them, they say we are being cattiest. We have to be timid with them as even the Government gives them more importance. ” He later challenged me to walk inside buildings no. L and 2 without feeling repulsed at the surroundings.
The secretary wife admitted that the only thing that perturbed her about the relocation in the complex was that the danger that came with living in a volatile environment with so longer practiced by anyone, most of the residents could recognize their Dalais gibbers from their language, demeanor and civic manners. Most of the Dalais had no discipline as such. Living amongst them, drug peddling was a common thing. It took almost nothing for them to start a fight with a passerby or their own neighbors who were non-Dalais. For Mr… Added, this resettlement only benefited him in the light that he was no longer referred to as a ‘slum dweller’.
He felt this to be an upgrade in his social status. CONCLUSION There are over 20,000 Pass that have been rehabilitated under the MUTE, who have been shifted from their shanties, slums, villages, shawls or other simple tenements. A look at their conditions gives one a curious mixture of both the admirable and the dubious. This may well be the first time in our history that the Governme