Skip to main content

Lack of legislation "prevents" Bombay High Court to order relief to 13-day-old homeless infant in Mumbai

By Our Representative
The Bombay High Court has reportedly regretted that it cannot provide any relief to a 13-days-old girl child, resident of a slum at Yari Road, saying it is “helpless”. The apex body of many of India’s mass organizations, National Alliance of People’s Movements (NAPM), in a statement said, the court “cited its limitation in its jurisdiction to provide relief to the homeless.”
The matter relates to a slum named Kavthekhadi at Yari road, Mumbai, demolished on March 22, 2016. The youngest member among those evicted was a five-days-old girl child. Evicted residents of the slum approached the Ghar Bachao Ghar Banao Andolan (GBGBA) for help.
“The GBGBA, with the help of Advocate Mathew J Nedumpara, took the matter to the Court. A writ petition was filed in the name of the five-days-old girl child through her mother. The child had become 13-days old at the time of filing of the petition”, NAPM says.
An informal settlement around mangrove areas on the land owned by the revenue department of Maharashtra government, the NAPM said, the court opined that “human habitation in such areas would be dangerous to the persons living there as well as to the environment.”
At the same time the court has acknowledged the plight of the now homeless petitioner and other homeless persons like her. NAPM, said, “The court, while expressing its helplessness to provide any relief to the petitioner said, ‘to extend to such persons any benefit or any assistance, there has to be a legislation or law in the field’.”
NAPM quoted the court as saying that “It is one thing to be sympathetic and consider such pleas, as are raised by Mr Nedumpara, on a humanitarian basis. It is quite another to grant any relief based on them and on the touchstone of law.”
“Eventually, we render justice in accordance with law and there are, therefore, restraints and limits on our jurisdiction also”, the court was further quoted as saying. It also asked the state to “take into consideration the plight of the homeless and provide them night shelter and other welfare schemes.”
Said NAPM, “At present there are only seven night shelters in the whole of the city of Mumbai which came into existence long back and not with enough capacity. As per the National Urban Livelihood Mission (NULM) run by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation, there must be one night shelter per one lakh population.”
“As per this, at least 125 night shelters are required in Mumbai in accordance with 2011 census”, it added.
“As far as the central housing scheme the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana is concerned, it comes under ‘Housing For All by 2022’, but there has been no progress in implement it”, the NAPM said.
Pointing out that slum settlements have “no water facility giving way to mafias to regulate water supply”, NAPM, whose statement has been prepared by well-known social activist Medha Patkar, said. 
“The Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai (MCGM) is not complying with the order of the Bombay High Court which directed the corporation to provide water to all the colonies whether authorized or unauthorized. Similarly, there is either no provision or least provision of toilets in these settlements”, it added.

Comments

TRENDING

'Halt Covid-19 vaccination drive': Indian doctors join campaign across 36 nations

By Rosamma Thomas*  A group of Spanish doctors first got together to call for a halt to the Covid-19 vaccinations, and doctors from other countries too later joined them – there are now over 12,000 doctors from India, Portugal, Canada, Hungary, South Africa, Israel and a host of other nations who have issued a call to halt vaccinations. On September 10, a group of Indian doctors came together to address the press over a webinar to explain why they thought the vaccination drive should end forthwith. Dr Amitav Banerjee, who after a career as an epidemiologist in the Indian Army now teaches at a private medical college in Pune, said there was no longer a medical emergency. Children are at low risk of infection, and there is good reason to halt vaccination and conduct proper research, given the high number of adverse events. There is a sudden and poorly explained spike in the number of young and healthy people dying. While it may be impossible to attribute deaths entirely to the vaccinatio

Did Mother Teresa trivialise poverty? 'You are suffering, that means Jesus is kissing you'

By Harsh Thakor*  The world commemorated the 25th death anniversary of Mother Teresa on September 5. Whatever her flaws, she rendered service to humanity in regions almost untranscended, resembling the relentless spirit of the waves of an ocean. Irrespective of community or religion, she offered her service. Even those not drawn by sainthood revere the role of Mother Teresa. For 68 years, she had worked selflessly and tirelessly in India and elsewhere in the world, taught the destitute, healed the sick, fed and clothed the poor, cared for abandoned children, housed lepers and those afflicted with HIV/AIDS and offered dignity in death to desolate persons abandoned by family and society. Mother Teresa was born in Skopje in 1910 to an Albanian family as AnjezĂ« Gonxhe Bojaxhiu. She became wedded to religious vows at an early age and moved to India to join the missionary work of the Catholic Church. Heartshaken by the misery faced by the Indian masses, in 1950 she set up her own

Pleading reparations from British? Will Brahminical elite do it for Dalits, Adivasis?

By Vidya Bhushan Rawat*  Queen Elizabeth II, the longest serving monarch of the British empire, died on September 8th at the age of 96, and since then the crazy 24x7 channels, including BBC and CNN, have been minutely reporting every event related to her death. The funeral will take place on September 19th, but till then people will watch various events and engagements of the royal family, particularly the new King Charles III and his consort. The Queen ruled for over 70 years, and hence one can understand the feeling of loss to a nation which ruled a large part of the world till the middle of the last century. India too declared a one-day national mourning on September 11th. World leaders are expected to join the funeral procession on September 19th, and the London police is expecting massive gathering of people and leaders on that day. The question as to why the United Kingdom, despite being a robust democracy, is still hanging on to monarchy has been widely discussed. The question b

Tracing roots of Hindutva Zionism: cannon fodder for 'warped' nationalist pretensions

By Shamsul Islam*  Those who believe in a world free of hegemonic ethno-nationalism, racism, religious bigotry and hatred have rightly taken note of Zionism and its ally Christian Zionism, major perpetrators of ethnic cleansing of ‘Others’. However, the civilized world with its core belief in multi-culturalism and peaceful co-existence is oblivious to a no less dangerous threat to the present human civilization: the Hindutva Zionism. As the term reads it is part of the Hindutva world-view which stands for an exclusive Hindu India minus Muslims and Christians. The other religions like Sikhism, Buddhism, and Jainism will have no independent status but treated as part of Hinduism. The Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS; National Volunteer Organization) is the most prominent flag-bearer of the Hindutva politics whose cadres presently rule India, the largest democracy in the world. RSS was founded by Keshav Baliram Hedgewar (1889-1940) in 1925 who was disillusioned with the Indian freedom st

Regional parties, anti-Congress progressives, civil society groups 'joining' Bharat Jodo

By Harshavardhan Purandare, Sandeep Pandey*  The Congress party declared Bharat Chhodo (Quit India) movement against the British regime in 1942. The Congress party has now launched a movement Bharat Jodo (Connecting and Uniting India) against the Modi regime in 2022. Indian people have had a journey of 80 years since Mahatma Gandhi gave that Quit India call to the British and we have to agree that we stand most divided in our modern history when Rahul Gandhi is giving this Bharat Jodo call to the nation. And back then, Congress was a thriving idealistic political movement against the British rulers and now it is an ever weakening political organization electorally defeated several times. However, it is India at stake, not just the Congress party. That is why so many regional political parties, civil society organizations, traditional anti-Congress progressive forces like socialists and communists, intellectuals and civil servants have declared their support and are proactively partici

Shocking? No Covid vaccine trials conducted on pregnant, lactating women: RTI reply

By Rosamma Thomas*  A Right to Information applicant who sought details of safety trials conducted in India on pregnant and lactating women for three Covid vaccines in use in India – Covishield, Covaxin and ZyCov-D -- was shocked to learn from the Central Drugs Standard Control Organization (CDSCO) that Serum Institute, manufacturer of Covishield, and Cadila Healthcare, manufacturer of the ZyCov-D vaccine, had not sought permission for such trials.  Bharat Biotech, manufacturer of Covaxin, had sought permission for trial on pregnant women and later withdrawn its application. This response , provided after the applicant was initially unsatisfied with the response and went in appeal, is from the joint drugs controller, CDSCO. It was dated September 13, 2022. One researcher closely following the vaccine rollout, however, is of the opinion that the lack of a trial on pregnant and lactating women is a blessing; potential trial participants and their unborn babies thus escaped harm. Aruna Ro

Grave error? Scholar blames ex-Gujarat babu for anti-Christian riots 'citing fake report'

By Rajiv Shah  A few days back, I received a message from one of the finest former Gujarat government bureaucrats, PG Ramrakhiani, a 1964 batch IAS official, who retired in November 2000. I would often interact with him in 1997-99, even later, after I was sent to Gandhinagar as a Times of India man to cover Sachivalaya. Those were turbulent times. Shankarsinh Vaghela was the Gujarat chief minister, under attack from two sides – from the BJP, which he had left to form a separate breakaway party, Rashtriya Janata Party (RJP), one one hand, and the Congress, which was supporting him from outside, on the other. Ramrakhiani, in his message, referred to the book authored by Ghanshyam Shah and Jan Breman, both top-notch scholars who have known Gujarat in and out. Called “Gujarat, Cradle and Harbinger of Identity Politics: India’s Injurious Frame of Communalism”, I reviewed the book in January 2022.  It claims that Muslims in Gujarat have been turned into “new untouchables”, thanks to the Hin

Excess to cheetah in Kuno to increase 'woes' of local people, 'disturb' wildlife balance

Bharat Dogra*  The release of eight cheetahs into the Kuno National Park ( Madhya Pradesh) by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on September 17, although accompanied by a media blitz, has raised several questions. The animals were flown from Namibia to Gwalior and from there they were taken to the release site in a helicopter. Official sources have stated that this is the first time a large carnivorous species has been moved across continents for establishing a new population. This first release will be followed by others under this project. However, precisely for this reason, it is important to be cautious because if such translocations have been generally avoided in the past, there may have been reasons for this and at the same time we do not have much learning experiences from the past. The Cheetah became extinct in India in 1952, although this very fast moving animal is still remembered in the folklore of many areas. Hence the first impulse is to say that trying to introduce and revive

Buddhist shrines were 'massively destroyed' by Brahmanical rulers: Historian DN Jha

Nalanda mahavihara By Our Representative Prominent historian DN Jha, an expert in India's ancient and medieval past, in his new book , "Against the Grain: Notes on Identity, Intolerance and History", in a sharp critique of "Hindutva ideologues", who look at the ancient period of Indian history as "a golden age marked by social harmony, devoid of any religious violence", has said, "Demolition and desecration of rival religious establishments, and the appropriation of their idols, was not uncommon in India before the advent of Islam".

'Military diplomacy': US praises Bangladesh Army for leadership role in UN operations

By Kamal Uddin Mazumder* As the Indo-Pacific region represents the world’s economic and strategic center of gravity, the Indian Ocean today is becoming the centerpiece of all geo-strategic play. Cooperation in the region is crucial to implementing the international community’s global agenda, including achieving the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. Major powers like the US have enhanced and deepened their strategic engagement and leadership roles with countries in the region. The Indo-Pacific Army Management Seminar, or IPAMS, is a U.S. Army Pacific (USARPAC) initiated conference that is aimed at facilitating and enhancing interactions among the armies of the Indo-Pacific region. This year's 46th Indo-Pacific Armies Management Seminar (IPAMS)-2022, co-hosted by the Bangladesh Army and US Army Pacific (USARPAC), concluded in Dhaka. The objective of IPAMS is to promote peace and stability in the region through mutual understanding, dialogue, and friendship. It is the largest confer