Quality of Life of Slum Dwellers in the Interim Phase of Rehabilitation Schemes

DOI : 10.17577/IJERTV8IS070038

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Quality of Life of Slum Dwellers in the Interim Phase of Rehabilitation Schemes

Anusha Saxena, Dr. Yogesh K Garg

Maulana Azad National Institute of Technology

Abstract:- This paper titled Quality of life of slum dwellers in the interim phase of rehabilitation schemes revolves around the absence of a strong policy rhetoric and implementation gap under slums covered in the Basic Services for Urban Poor scheme. In the in-situ rehabilitation program of BSUP scheme, there is a chain of movement where the slum dwellers are first relocated from their present location to a temporary location (this is the interim stage of rehabilitation) and after some time, are shifted to the redeveloped housing colonies. Through this study, an attempt has been made to identify the weak rhetoric and/or absence of rhetoric for those who spend months and sometimes years in those interim sites forming new slum settlements of their own. It also looks at the gaps in the policy rhetoric that need to be addressed in forming similar policies for urban poor in future.

The issue being addressed in this paper comes from ignorance of the interim phase of relocation of the slum dwellers thus indicating the absence of a strong rhetoric. Not only the provisions made in the policy are limited but extension of stay on this temporary site due to delay in allotment of houses leads to various problems including impoverishment of the slum dwellers. Rahul Nagar Slum identified as the case study, focuses on the weak rhetoric of provisions for the relocated slum dwellers on interim or temporary site. At the end of this study, a conclusion based on what is going wrong, what are the major issues identified, what can be done to solve the problems and what can be the future scope for research for more successful policies in future has been given.


In the last few decades high scale rural to urban migration has led to formation of slums in all metro cities. These slum dwellers struggle with their daily life in an unhealthy environment with a constant fear of being evicted. The Government from its side has tried various programs to put a check on migration but these programs/schemes are not the only solution to this problem. After all, the slum dwellers are also a part of the society and have the right to work/reside in the city they want. The Basic Services to Urban Poor is yet another scheme that was introduced for these slum dwellers to ensure equitable provision of services and housing at affordable prices.


A timeline for various schemes in all the five year plans has been generated in figure 1.1(created using information from Dr. A.K. Singhs report on Urban Poverty Alleviation) (Singh) along with the with new schemes that have come up in the last 5 years

Figure 1: Timeline for evolution of slum related programs/schemes in India


The Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission is a reform based program that was launched for fast track development of Indian cities. Under this program, a total of 64 Cities were taken up for development under funding from central and state governments. The main idea behind this program was the concept of reforms. A set of reforms both at State and City level was defined and at both levels there were sets of mandatory and optional reforms which the State and Local Governments had to practice in order to receive the funds. It was believed that through such a technique, the program would lead to wholesome development of the cities. It will not just catalyze the development process through sufficient funds but will also enable the State and Local Governments to increase their efficiency in a regulated manner. These reforms come in a wide range covering sectors like governance, infrastructure, urban poor, administration, finance etc. Out of the stated reforms, Basic Services to Urban Poor (BSUP) and internal earmarking of funds for services to urban poor are two mandatory reforms for Urban Local Bodies while earmarking 25% of developed land in all housing projects for EWS/LIG is an optional reform (G. MoUD).


Basic Services for the Urban Poor (BSUP) is a mandatory urban poverty reform for all local bodies supported under JNNURM. Its goal is to; Provide basic services (including water supply and sanitation) to all poor including security of tenure, and improved housing at affordable prices and ensure delivery of social services of education, health and social security to poor people (MoUD, Mandatory Primer).

Under the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission, to access the funds, every city is supposed to prepare a City Development Plan (CDP) where it gives the details of the various planning activities that it is supposed to implement in the coming years. Further for undertaking projects under the identified areas, cities are supposed to prepare Detailed Project Reports (DPR) including specific components of the project like education, health and social security.


The coverage of the sub-Mission on Basic Services to the Urban Poor:-

  1. (Integrated development of slums, i.e., housing and development of infrastructure projects in the slums in the identified cities.

  2. Projects involving development/improvement/maintenance of basic services to the urban poor.

  3. Slum improvement and rehabilitation projects.

  4. Projects on water supply/sewerage/drainage, community toilets/baths, etc.

  5. Houses at affordable costs for slum dwellers/ urban poor/EWS/LIG categories.

  6. Construction and improvements of drains/storm water drains.

  7. Environmental improvement of slums and solid waste management.

  8. Street lighting.

  9. Civic amenities, like community halls, child care centers, etc.

  10. Operation and maintenance of assets created under this component.

    BSUP-Modified guidelines 4

  11. Convergence of health, education and social security schemes for urban poor) (MHUPA, JNNURM, Guidelines for Basic Services to Urban Poor)


The reforms important from the point of view of Slums are:

  • Internal earmarking within Urban Local Body budgets for basic services to the urban poor eventually developing a Basic Services to the Urban Poor Fund so that adequate resources are available for meeting the needs of the urban poor (MHUPA, BSUP revised guidelines);

  • Provision of basic services to the urban poor including security of tenure at affordable prices, improved housing, water supply, sanitation and ensuring delivery of other already existing universal services of the government for education, health and social security in a time-bound manner; and (MHUPA, BSUP revised guidelines)

  • Earmarking at least 20-25% of developed land in all housing projects (both Public and Private Agencies) for EWS/LIG category with a system of cross-subsidization so that land is available for affordable housing for the urban poor (MHUPA, BSUP revised guidelines).

Through this scheme, it was expected that the city environment will improve with the poor getting access to basic municipal services and improvement in their quality of life. In addition to the slum dwellers becoming lawful residents of the city will improve its revenues. Also through improved urban governance, the poor get legal services and legal housing.

But, like all other programs, there is a need to assess the work done so a to know whether the defined objectives have been achieved and if there have been any shortcomings in the whole process that have restrained the scheme from getting the expected outcomes.

(MoUD, Mandatory Primer). This reform has three key components: Housing, basic facilities and social services (MoUD, Mandatory Primer).

Table 1: Reform Component


  1. Housing for the poor must be found close to their work places and preferably within the city limits

  2. In-house metered water connection and a lifeline tariff with payments in easy installments both for connections and user costs

  3. In-house toilets linked to underground sewerage/septic tanks.

  4. Metered power supply with minimum tariff for use of one light and one fan based on level of affordability and easy payment plans.

  5. Housing must also be affordable. The poor must be linked to formal banks for credit at low interest rates that allow them to repay loans in easy installments.

Basic Municipal Services

  1. Community stand-posts where in-house connections are not possible to provide

  2. Community toilets where private toilets cannot be provided

  3. Regular and efficient solid waste management

  4. Drains concrete and covered with proper gradients/connected with city networks/underground drainage systems for wastewater disposal.

  5. Roads (RCC) connected to city roads with an efficient public transport system

  6. Legal/metered power supply with affordable lifeline tariffs and easy

  7. payment plans for connection/user costs

Social Services

  1. Access to schools

  2. Access to health care services (health posts)

  3. Social Security

  4. Support for livelihoods (skill development, access to micro credit).

Source: Mandatory Primer 6, JNNURM (MoUD, Mandatory Primer)

Out of all the selected 64 cities, cities of Itanagar, Imphal, Aizwar, Kohima, Agartala and Bhopal received the status of best practice in successfully implemented the reform of internal earmarking of funds for services to urban poor (MoUD, Internal Earmarking). In the BSUP reform, the states of Orissa and Andhra Pradesh have become examples of best practices.

To achieve the stated objectives, Rehabilitation of the selected slums under this mission has played a major role. It was believed that to give the slum dwellers a wholesome benefit of the scheme and give them a fair chance to lead a better life in well-developed pucca houses with all basic services that are required to lead a harmonious life. From its overall idea of provision of housing to the poor, this scheme has been a big success in most of the cities where it was implemented.

The study is done based on the above mentioned parameters and their detailed subparts. Since the study will be carried out for identifying the rhetoric reality gap at two levels peoples perspective and urban local bodys perspective. For the completion of this study the site that was selected had been in the interim phase i.e. where the slum dwellers were temporarily relocated to another site till the redevelopment work got completed.


In Bhopal a total of 14 projects have been taken up under the Basic Services for Urban Poor scheme. Out of these 14 projects, none of the projects has taken up only service provision or up gradation rather all fourteen projects undertake slum rehabilitation. Thus the task was to identify a project in the interim stage and the slum selected was Rahul Nagar. The peculiar feature of this slum is that its people were relocated to the interim site for more than five years and due to incompletion of the work resided there for much longer than planned. The details of this case have been provided in table 5 shown below:

The scheme rhetoric talks about recommendations for provision of transit housing but in practice there are several major issues related to the process:

  1. Means of identification of Beneficiaries

  2. Patta Daan- the new terminology for illegal sale of pattas

  3. Provision of services on the plot

  4. Extension of stay on the site

  5. Impoverishment of the non-beneficiaries


    In the in-situ rehabilitation, there is a chain of movement where the slum dwellers are first relocated from their present location to a temporary location (this is the interim stage of rehabilitation) and after some time, are shifted to the redeveloped housing colonies. When these people are given a temporary housing location that consists of only an open plot. For residing in such a

    place the people have to first make the place habitable by constructing their houses and then stay there for an undefined period of time without any infrastructure or other facilities. These people not only have to face the problem of shifting from their already set location to a totally new place but many of them are not even eligible of getting the new houses that are being redeveloped on the original site.

    Chain of Movement

    • Selection of slum

    • Relocation to temporary site

    • Identification

      of Relocation

      Interim Stage

    • Defined time- 8 months, actual time- 2-3 years

    • Open plot to people

    • No



    • Formation of

    • Mismatch between proposals in DPR and reality

    • Lack of awareness among people about what they are entitled to get Completed


      new slum by non beneficiaries

      • Implemsetnatgaetion Problems

      • Increase in prices of houses due to delay in completion

Figure 2: Chain of Movement of Slum Dwellers


The study focusses on identifying issues from two perspectives; the first one is from the policy side where an attempt is made to identify weak rhetoric or absence of rhetoric for identified issues in the policy. The second perspective is to check whether the rhetoric defined in the policy is being implemented on the ground in the expected manner. To understand these two perspectives a part wise study was carried out for which the methodology followed was as follows:

  • Review of the Detailed Project Reports (DPRs) of the selected site

  • Review of provisions made in the scheme for people in the interim stage

  • Identification of legal, official issues in this stage through ULB/Parastatals survey

  • Identification of issues of the people relocated to the temporary site

Through this study of rhetoric versus reality in rehabilitation program for slum dwellers under the BSUP scheme, an attempt is being made to view the whole scenario from two perspectives, one is to know the rhetoric that the scheme talks of and how these do or do not match with the reality on ground for its target beneficiaries, the second aspect of this study is identification of the gap between the scheme rhetoric and its implementation by the Urban local bodies and other players involved in the development process. Thus, the first part was derived from literature review and checked on site while the second part was covered through primary studies and field work.


Famous for its magnificent lakes and natural beauty, the city of Bhopal comes among the top ten most livable cities of India. Bhopal was declared the capital of newly reorganized State of Madhya Pradesh in the year 1956 (BMC). Bhopal district is almost 80% urbanized with most people living in the city of Bhopal (BMC). Being the principal city of the region, Bhopal serves all towns and districts around it with Indore being the nearest large city at about 180 km. o west. Figure 3 shows the growth of Bhopal city in different directions from the center.

Source: Bhopal Development Plan, 2005

Figure 3: Growth of Bhopal City


Bhopal has attracted high numbers of migrants from the nearby villages and towns since last many decades. In addition to providing better working opportunities to people from nearby towns and villages, the presence of Mandideep Industrial Area near the city has always invited people (especially labour class) to the city. 39% of the income earners are engaged in the informal sector, which is a sizable amount at the same time 23% of the households, have its main income earner in informal sector (BMC) The average household size of the BPL households as per the CDP estimation was 7.2, whilst the core poor had the highest household size at 8.1 with the intermediate poor at 7.2 and the transitional poor at 6.5 (BMC).

Table 2: Housing Shortage and Requirement

Source: Integrated Urban Development in Madhya Pradesh for Bhopal, ADB


The city of Bhopal is divided into 14 zones and 53 wards. In the whole city, there are a total of 386 slums with 183989 households, a total of 936066 population and 86708 families below poverty line (BMC). The survey data revealed a higher proportion of low income families who reported owning their plot of land; 58.5% of LIG and 80.3% of the EWS households owned their plot of land (BMC). It was also observed that nearly 25% of LIG and 35% of EWS households had been given pattas by the government (i.e.17.5% of the total population). Significantly, 78.7% of the EWS households and 82.5% of BPL households owned their houses (BMC)


Location of Slums


Location of Slums

Source: CDP, Bhopal (BMC)

Figure 4: Location of Slums in Bhopal

Table 3: Slum Population over Period of Time

Source: Census of India 1971 to 1991-Town Directory of Madhya Pradesh & 1975 Bhopal Development Plan (BMC) IMPORTANT PUBLIC INTERVENTIONS FOR SLUM IMPROVEMENT

PATTA Act- 1984 and 98 (Pattadhruti Adhikaron Ka Pradan Kiya Jana)

Patta act was introduced to extend land tenure rights of people who had occupied government land in cities. It was introduced to grant leasehold rights to the people who were landless but had occupied urban lands in cities. Tenure rights could be given in-situ or in alternative locations on freehold, lease or license basis (Durand-Lasserve) In Madhya Pradesh, this act was undertaken by the Government in the year 1984 and was amended in 1998 under Rajiv Gandhi Aashray Abhiyan to extend the cut-off date of eligibility to 31st May 1998 with the major amendments being revision of plot areas between 600 1000 square feets, lease rent per square feet per year for 10 years at the rate of Rs. 1.00 for Nagar Panchayats, Rs. 1.50 for other towns and Rs. 2.00 for Rajbhogi cities (Bhopal, Indore, Jabalpur, Gwalior and Raipur) (BMC). The introduction of mohalla samitis was an important component of this amendment which was taken up to ensure empowerment of communities. Under the `Patta Act, three categories

of pattas were given, category `ka (A) for the registration of disputed cases, category `kha (B) for permanent lease of 30 years and category `gha (C) for temporary lease of 1 year (BMC).


Community Development System was created by District Urban Development Authority under the Urban Poverty Alleviation Program. The CDS system covered 20 slums of the city where thrift and credit groups were formed.


Bhopal Municipal Corporation took up this initiative for transforming physical infrastructure, improve environment and facilitate community participation at grass root level.

Identified Key Indicators for the Study

The indicators identified for the purpose of this study are defined as follows:

Beneficiaries Identification

The process of beneficiary identification was understood in detail taking the case of Bhopal city and how the Bhopal Municipal Corporation identifies beneficiaries. An attempt to identify loopholes (if any) in the whole process was done where people with eligibility documents could not become beneficiaries of the program and vice versa.

Impoverishment of the non-beneficiaries

The whole concept of the Basic Services to the Urban Poor Scheme revolves around the provision of better living conditions to the poor by providing them basic services of water supply, sanitation, sewerage management etc. and housing. Through the process of beneficiary identification, the people who are eligible for getting the houses in the redeveloped colony are selected. While the redevelopment of the selected slum takes place, the residents are sent to a temporary site also known as the interim site where the people spend a fixed amount of time till they are shifted back to the original site. Usually the projects do not get completed in the defined time and hence the impoverishment of these slum dwellers takes place.

The impoverishment can be due to various reasons. These issues become prominent when the project completion time overshoots or if the interim site is located far away from the original site. However, the people who suffer the most are the ones who are non- beneficiaries i.e. those who are not eligible for getting housing on the original site. There are various issues related to this process like school dropouts/delay/change in school due to increased distances, loss of livelihood and other income activities related, homelessness etc. but the biggest problem that comes from the impoverishment of slum dwellers is the formation of a new slum which completely defeats the idea of the scheme. Thus through this indicator the situation of Bhopal city has been covered to check the methods/techniques that are followed by the local bodies for looking after this problem.

Redevelopment of Rahul Nagar Slum

This slum is located in ward 31 of zone 6 in Bhopal city. The slum ID is 139. Rahul nagar slum is situated right next to Maulana Azad National Institute of Technology. The total population of the slum before relocation was 5225 people with approximately 1065 households and out of these households, 675 households are below poverty line (Mehta). Majority of hutments were kuccha or semi-kuccha structures.

The planning area for this site is 6.548 Ha. Where a total of 2028 houses will be constructed from which a population of 11762 will be benefitted. The township for slum dwellers of Rahul Nagar will have all amenities like community hall, open spaces, park/garden, playground, primary school, primary health center, hawkers zone and local shops apart from a well-developed infrastructure network. (Mehta)

Table 4: Details of Rahul Nagar Redevelopment Project

S. No.

Name of Slum


Total Cost of EWS unit

Total Cost of External Development

Total Cost of Social Infrastructure Work

Total Amount


Rahul Nagar






Source: DPR Rahul Nagar, (Mehta)

The selection of Rahul Nagar Slum for redevelopment was like a dream come true for its residents who were struggling with kuccha houses, improper infrastructure services and unhygienic living conditions. However what came as a boon had its repercussions as well.

As explained earlier, there is a chain of movement in the whole process of rehabilitation. The redevelopment of Rahul Nagar housing along with infrastructure and other development works was supposed to finish by the year 2008 which did not happen.

The slum dwellers that were relocated were shifted to three different sites. Thus for the purpose of sampling, stratified sampling method was used where samples were collectedfrom all three sites.

Understanding the policy rhetoric and reality on ground

Table 5: Prescribed BSUP Guidelines versus Actual Practice


Prescribed BSUP Guidelines

Actual Practice on Field


Beneficiary contribution upto 12% of housing unit cost

The contribution is still 12 % but the actual amount has increased by 3 times


In situ development as far as possible, multistory housing promoted



Recommends provision for transit housing

Only one time transport service given. Non beneficiaries not even


Participation of slum-dwellers mandated; documentation to be provided specifying details of what people are getting

Absence of peoples participation in the process


Provision for additional amenities

Provision mentioned in the scheme not seen on site


Security of tenure to be given

No ownership, only permission for acquiring finance

Rahul Nagar Data Analysis and Inferences

87% households who have been relocated from Rahul Nagar possess BPL cards. However, the use of ration cards for purchase of goods at cheaper cost does not work here since the governments ration shop that sells these goods at cheaper rates is located in the original location. Thus rather than providing the basic goods at lower prices the Government has indeed increased the cost of living for to these below poverty line slum dwellers.

less than 42000 42001 to 82000 82001to 120000 above 120001





Figure5: Income of Households

All the households surveyed owned the house in the departed slum. As per the survey outcomes, only 10% of the households surveyed had lived in the Rahul nagar slum for less than 10 years while 90% households had lived there for more than 10 years indicating a long stay where they had developed and modified their houses. It also came out from the survey that 80% people paid electricity bill and few other charges like water bill and solid waste management unlike the present condition, where there is absolute absence of even basic living conditions people do not have the time and energy to complain about other services.

less than 10 years 10 to 20 years 20 to 30 years above 3o years





Figure 65: Years spent in Rahul nagar

Although a major share of the houses surveyed was semi pucca in nature, the discussions with local people revealed that these houses had reached this status from kuccha structure with time. This transition from kuccha to semi pucca and semi pucca to

pucca took place over a long period of time with developments from peoples side as well as help from other government schemes. Contrary to this, the place where these households have been from last 4 years i.e. the interim site has all kuccha structures.

pucca semi pucca kuccha

14% 14%


Figure7: Type of housing structure

Similarly, all the houses in the departed slum had community water connection with regular supply and better quality of water than now. Toilet facility provided here is of temporary nature with no maintenance ultimately leading to Open Defecation

Figure 6: Site for open defecation

Individual Toilets Community Toilets Open Defecation




Figure 8: Toilet facility

As per the provisions made in the policy document, the slum dwellers being relocated for the purpose of redevelopment of colonies/houses should be given assistance and monetary support in shifting from their original place to the interim site. Due to the absence of specific directions, the provisions to be made are left at the mercy of the urban local bodies. BMC claims provision of INR 5000, provision of construction material and transport facility for shifting to the people. However, on asking the people it was found that the construction material consisted of only 4 ballis, one bamboo and a small piece of land.

Lost assets: many items like crockery, television etc. Cost of transporting assets: about 300/trip in loading autos where all households had to make and 2 to 3 trips. The cost of constructing and upgrading the house took about 10,000 to 5,000 INR with additional Costs of – roof, damage repair in rains etc.

Table 64: Rhetoric versus reality in interim stage



A one month prior notice has to be given to the slum dwellers before demolishing their houses

They were informed only 1 or 2 days prior to the demolition

The Policy gives a maximum of 18 months on interim site

The beneficiaries spent 5+ years at the interim site and the non- beneficiaries settled at the interim site forming a new slum

Mobilization amount has to be given to the households for shifting from previous slum to the interim site

100% households said they did not receive mobilization amount by BMC

Transport facility (loading truck/auto) will be provided for shifting assets from departed site to interim site

Only 38% people were provided transport facility for getting their household items to interim site

Construction material will be provided by the Municipal Corporation

Only 2 bamboo sticks, 4 balli and an open plot of 10*10 ft. on rocky land

Poor connectivity to public transport

48% students changed school 6% left school temporarily Increased distances to school and work

Ration Shops are present in Rahul Nagar

The interim site is 6 km away from the original site

12% households reported loss of livelihood (by females) due to increased distance

84% households reported problems in accessing facilities like hospital, market, mandi

48% households reported increased Travel expenses due to increase in distance

Figure 107: Issues at the interim site


This major issue of people being left out after the temporary relocation of the slum dwellers goes unseen many a times. This relocation which is mostly delayed due to untimely incompletion of the projects leads to impoverishment of the slum dwellers. The services provided to these people on site are negligible due to absence of a strong rhetoric in the schemes and low accountability of the private companies. Hence, the poor are on their own on a completely new site with only an empty piece of land and negligible construction material. This is a serious issue since there are major cases of health hazards, accidents and increased expenses which cannot be ignored. A strong rhetoric for this unaccounted stage of the rehabilitation process should be introduced in the policy.

Table 7 Conclusion and recommendations



Weak Rhetoric for people in the interim phase

  1. Slum dwellers are relocated to undeveloped sometimes even inhabitable temporary sites.

  2. The rhetoric mentioned in BSUP scheme is extremely weak and lacks and important factors

  1. The relocation site should not be so far from the original site that if effects te work, education of people.

  2. Provision of temporary but acceptable services, infrastructure in terms of quality

  3. A representative from the ULB should be accountable to the people in the interim site

Impoverishment of Non Beneficiaries and people in interim phase

Drop outs from school, loss of employment especially in women, increase in expenses

The ULB must push the private company to strictly complete the project on time


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