Inequality rampant in Indian cities

Blaming migrants sustains a negative attitude: UN report


Trithesh Nandan | December 9, 2011

The people have been facing different kinds of deprivation and inequality in the Indian cities, according to a UNESCO study on the India urban policies.

“There are inequality, ghettoisation, apartheid and segregation across the cities in India,” said Miloon Kothari, former UN special rapporteur on adequate housing, while releasing the study in Delhi on Friday. He has also contributed a chapter in the study, entitled ‘Urban Policies and the Right to the City in India: Rights, Responsibilities and Citizenship’.

Kothari added, “Where new projects (gated communities, malls, entertainments complexes) have created a clear demarcation between ‘rich’ and ‘poor’ areas, slums are sprawling, with little access to essential civic services, especially water, electricity and sanitation.”

However, the study does not have data on the percentage or number of people facing inequality in the Indian cities. It clarified, “A rights-based approach in the context of Indian cities has not yet been extensively documented and researched.”

Kothari also took a dig on the government’s policies of not containing the property speculation in cities. “The middle-class people are not able to buy a house in cities as the property mafias have controlled the pricing of houses,” he added.

“The urban planning in India is elitist, not concerned to everybody,” said professor Ram B Bhagat of International Institute for Population Sciences. According to the census 2011, one-third of Indians, close to 377 million out of 1.2 billion, now live in urban areas. “The local governance should be strengthened,” said Bhagat.

The study also noted that in the absence of proper urban planning; migrants are blamed for cities’ woes. “This not only sustains a negative attitude but even incites hatred and violence towards migrants,” said the study.

It said that the 12th five-year plan (2012-17), Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewable Mission (JNNURM) and city development plans should address the concerns of migrants and their rights.

The study suggested the concept of ‘Right to the City’ to ensure better access and opportunities for everyone living in cities.




Other News

On a personal note: Javed Jaffrey

After his much-appreciated debut in Meri Jung in 1985, Javed Jaffrey inspired a new generation of dancers. He then turned from dance to comedy. The versatile actor constantly changes his styles and his live, film, TV and radio appearances always promise novelty and surprise. In 2014 he joined the Aam A

Allegations against CJI: Inquiry will strengthen the independence of the judiciary

Yes, we must stand rock solid with the judiciary and the judges. We must protect the independence of the judiciary too. What does this mean in the present context of a very serious charge of sexual harassment levelled by a former employee of the court against the CJI?  We are told that there is a larg

“Managing data is challenging”

The Centre for Railway Information Systems (CRIS) is a society set up by the railways ministry in July 1986 to provide IT related services to the Indian Railways. CRIS deals in a gamut of functions, like passenger ticketing, freight operations, train dispatching and control, crew management, e-procurement,

A boost to those who need it most

What are 600 million people? Almost twice the population of the US. What are 500 million people? About three-fourth of the population of Europe. Why are we talking about these numbers? Well, because as per a study by Sandhya Krishnan and Neeraj Hatekar (‘Rise of New Middle Class in India and Its

Expanding Eureka!

Abright yellow van with figures of children playing with a whirligig, a Newton’s cradle, a magnetic compass rolls into the Government Higher Primary School in Kittaganahalli, on the outskirts of Bengaluru. Students in the playground leave what they are doing and mill about it in excitement. For they

The spark in the classroom

Not many children dream of starting an idyllic school of their own when they grow up. But Ramji Raghavan, founder of the Agastya International Foundation – which fosters the creative learning of science in stude

Current Issue

Current Issue


CM Nitish’s convoy attacked in Buxar


Facebook    Twitter    Google Plus    Linkedin    Subscribe Newsletter