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Dalit housing societies in Ahmedabad "fraudulently" taken away by non-Dalits: Activist writes to Gujarat CM

A posh tower on a Dalit housing cooperative society land in Ahmedabad
By Our Representative
Veteran Dalit rights activist Valjibhai Patel has alleged that as many as 33 societies -- such as Valmiki and Savaiyanath -- in Ahmedabad's posh Bodakdev and Navrangpura areas, reserved for scheduled caste (SC) people, have fraudulently passed on to upper caste sections, who have constructed bungalows and flats on them. "This is based on a survey which we carried out in the city", he claimed.
In a letter to Gujarat chief minister Vijay Rupani, Patel, who is general secretary, Council for Social Justice (CSJ), said that poor people living on 1.23 square metres of land in six major cities of Gujarat -- Ahmedabad, Vadodara, Rajkot, Surat, Jamnagar and Bhavnagar -- have been displaced, and SC community people have not been provided with alternative housing despite the clearcut legal provision.
"We wrote letters to the district collector's offices in the six cities about this two years ago, apprising them that the slum clearance law, which came into effect in 1970, has the provision that people belonging to the SC community be provided alternative housing on a priority basis, and that SC housing societies should be registered, in which non-SC people should not allowed to become members", Patel said.
"In violation of the provision, non-SC people were allowed to become members of these housing societies. Despite our reminder to the authorities in the six cities, we have so far not received any reply. We request you to take this up and inquiring into the irregularity", the letter tells the chief minister.

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