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3-year wait for houses over for Ragigudda slum-dwellers

Bangalore, Nov 21, 2012, DHNS:

CM opens complex with provision for 1,500 homes; 850 units ready

The residents of the erstwhile Ragigudda slum got secure shelters after a three-year wait on Wednesday, with Chief Minister Jagadish Shettar inaugurating the ‘Vivekananda Vasathi Sankeerna,’ a housing complex for 1,500 families from the slum.

The slum-dwellers were displaced from their settlement in 2009 and were later provided temporary accommodation at a public park nearby.

Though they were initially promised homes within a year, they had to wait for three years before they finally got to see the houses. At present, the construction of 850 houses has been completed, according to officials.

The work on the remaining houses will be completed in the next six months. Within the next 10 days, the government will start allotting houses and about 100 families can move into their new homes, said MLA B N Vijay Kumar, speaking on the occasion.

After inaugurating the houses, Shettar said the government would waive 10 per cent of the cost that the slumdwellers had to contribute for the housing project.

The project was planned with 50 per cent of the funds from the Centre, 40 per cent from the State, while the remaining 10 per cent was to be paid by the dwellers, before moving into their houses. The government has announced that this money will now be pooled in from funds allocated for the welfare of SC/STs.

Even as the homes were inaugurated, a few residents of the slum alleged that local leaders had sold a few of the houses to outsiders. The names of 179 families were missing from a new list of the Slum Development Board, ahead of the inauguration, residents alleged.

Speaking to Deccan Herald, one of the residents said a census was conducted in 2009 and 1,435 homes were identified.

“Ahead of the inauguration, a new list was created and 179 names from the earlier list are missing. Names of people who are not part of this slum have been added,” he alleged.

A few others who got their houses were confused about the next step.
The construction work is incomplete and the houses have no taps. Also, work on the kitchen and toilet are far from over.

“We have not been told anything. Maybe, we have to get the rest of the things fixed ourselves,” said Savitramma, one of the beneficiaries.

She said she had not been living in the temporary accommodation provided by the government, after she was displaced from her home in Ragigudda. She had rented a house all these years.


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