Skip to main content

Mumbai Dalits evicted to make sure minister "doesn't see them while passing by": NHRC told to intervene

Demolition in Santa Cruz (East)
By Our Representative
Mumbai-based Ghar Bhachao Ghar Banao Andolan (GBGBA) has asked the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) to urgently intervene to ensure justice to the Dalit community, which has been “forcibly” evicted from the post East Santa Cruz (East) area.
Calling it as the “most inhuman act of the state”, GBGBA says, currently the Dalit community is forced to live on a pavement along the Western Express Highway toward Airport, opposite to Vakola Police Station. These families are living in portable housing units designed by NGO Billion Bricks.
Pointing out that this settlement was “brutally evicted by the Bombay Municipal Corporation on March 10 to ensure that a passing by minister from that road does not face this settlement”, GBGBA says, to hide the settlement, “authorities threw mud on the pavement and planted trees.”
Quoting an individual of the community, GBGBA says, “We were cooking our daily meal, when the BMC vehicles came. started breaking our tents and throwing mud and soil in our food. Almost all terts was broken. We ran to the highland situated nearby.’’
“We were asked to be in the highland near the community, and were told that after the government convoy passes by, we could again come back and settle down”, another individual is quoted as saying.
Pointing out that this settlement comprised of migrants from Jalna district of Marathwada region, who settled in the city years ago, but were never able to afford a formal housing, GBGBA says, “While the dreams and desires of children from privileged class have no limits, a small girl from this community says: I want to sleep once in a bed; will I ever get one?’’
In yet another instance, says GBGBA, the 10 year old settlement comprising at least 600 households called Sidhharth Nagar in Andheri West is under threat. While the demolition has been temporarily stopped because of the campaign on the pretext that children’s examinations were going on, it would face eviction, if there is no intervention.
Pointing out that such demolitions would cause harm to the “physical health of children and women”, GBGA cites a recent survey report conducted under the Integrated Child Development Services Scheme in Siddharthnagar, which highlights the need for additional nutrition supply to children in the area.
“Any denial of this service will add to their already pathetic life. A mother, whose house was demolished on March 22, says that her child is just 5 months old, and the eviction has caused extensive damage to the ration that she had collected over the week. Now, she has nothing to eat, nor money to buy supplementary food materials.
According to GBGBA, “A preliminary survey conducted by GBGBA has shown that the income of these households are irregular and so low that they cannot afford a formal housing and hence these people are forced to live in informal settlement.”
It adds, “Any eviction will render these families homeless forcing them to live under the sky as only shelter which can put their lives at risk especially of young ones and vulnerable to many infectious communicable diseases.”
Pointing out that there are several settlements like these in Mumbai which are under threat of eviction from various department of Maharashtra government for one or the reason, GBGBA says, “Despite guarantee of all fundamental rights including ‘right to life’ through Article 21 of the Indian Constitution to each citizen of India, we see it is being violated.”

Comments

TRENDING

Buddhist shrines massively destroyed by Brahmanical rulers in "pre-Islamic" era: Historian DN Jha's survey

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".

Did Modi promote Dholavira, a UNESCO site now, as Gujarat CM? Facts don't tally

By Rajiv Shah  As would generally happen, Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s tweet – that not only was he “absolutely delighted” with the news of UNESCO tag to Dholavira, but he “ first visited ” the site during his “student days and was mesmerised by the place” – is being doubted by his detractors. None of the two tweets, strangely, even recalls once that it’s a Harappan site in Gujarat.

Labelling a Jesuit a Marxist? It's like saying if you use a plane, you become American

Jesuits: Cedric Prakash, Stan Swamy By Fr Cedric Prakash SJ* A thirteen- fourteen-year-old has many dreams! That's an impressionable age; at the cusp of finishing school. It is also a time when one tastes a different kind of freedom: to go for camps with boys of your own age (not with ones family). Such camps and outings were always enjoyed to the hilt. The ones, however, which still remain etched in my memory are the mission camps to the Jesuit missions in Maharashtra and Gujarat.

Giant conglomerates 'favoured': Whither tribal rights for jal-jungle-jameen?

Prafull Samantara By Mohammad Irshad Ansari*  The struggle for “Jal, Jungle and Jameen” has been a long-drawn battle for the tribal communities of India. This tussle was once again in the limelight with the proposed diamond mining in the Buxwaha forest of Chhatarpur (Madhya Pradesh). The only difference in this movement was the massive social media support it gained, which actually seems to tilt the scale for the tribal people in a long time.

If not Modi, then who? Why? I (an ordinary citizen) am there! Main hoon naa!

By Mansee Bal Bhargava*  The number of women ministers is doubled in early July from the first term after cabinet reshuffle by the present government led by Narendra Modi. While there were 06 women ministers in the previous term, this term there are 11. The previous two governments led by Dr Manmohan Singh had 10 women ministers in each tenure. Are these number of women ministers something to rejoice in the near 75 years of independence? Yes maybe, if we think that things are slowly improving in the patriarchal system. This change is less likely to achieve gender balance in the parliament otherwise we require more than 11 as per the 33% reservation . This change is also less likely because the men politicians’ inability to handle the country’s mess is becoming more and more evident and especially during the corona crisis. Seems, the addition of more women ministers may be a result of the recent assembly elections where women played a decisive role in the election results. For example

Effluent discharge into deep sea? Modi told to 'reconsider' Rs 2275 crore Gujarat project

Counterview Desk  In a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, well-known Gujarat-based environmentalist, Mahesh Pandya of the Paryavaran Mitra, has protested against the manner in with the Gujarat government is continuing with its deep sea effluent disposal project despite environmental concerns.

Swami Vivekananda's views on caste and sexuality were 'painfully' regressive

By Bhaskar Sur* Swami Vivekananda now belongs more to the modern Hindu mythology than reality. It makes a daunting job to discover the real human being who knew unemployment, humiliation of losing a teaching job for 'incompetence', longed in vain for the bliss of a happy conjugal life only to suffer the consequent frustration.

Gujarat govt gender insensitive? Cyclone package for fisherfolk 'ignores' poor women

By Our Representative A memorandum submitted to the Gujarat government by various fisherfolk associations of the Saurashtra region of Gujarat under the leadership of Ahmedabad NGO Centre for Social Justice's senior activist Arvind Khuman, who is based in Amreli, has suggested that the relief package offered to the fishermen affected by the Tauktae cyclone is not only inadequate, it is also gender insensitive.

Debt bondage, forced labour, sexual abuse in Gujarat's Bt cottonseed farms: Dutch study

By Rajiv Shah  A just-released study, sponsored by a Netherlands-based non-profit, Arisa , “Seeds of Oppression Wage sharecropping in Bt cottonseed production in Gujarat, India”, has said that a new form of bondage, or forced labour, exists in North India’s Bt cottonseed farms, in which bhagiyas, or wage sharecroppers, are employed against advances and are then often required to work for years together “without regular payment of wages.”

Tussle between Modi-led BJP govt, Young India 'key to political battle': NAPM

Counterview Desk  In its month-long campaign, civil rights network National Alliance for People’s Movements (NAPM) carried out what it called Young People's Political Persecution and Resistance in “solidarity with all comrades facing political persecution and remembering human rights defender Stan Swamy…”