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Bangalore's poor forced to live in tin sheds


Priyanjana Dutta,CNN-IBN
Feb 28, 2008 at 12:19am IST

Bangalore: The woes of nearly 6,000 people who have been living in tin sheds after the demolition of their quarters for Economically Weaker Section in the Ejipura area of Bangalore shows no signs of ending.

Even after the demolition no one has bothered to give them a home. The area is just a stone's throw away from Bangalore's posh Koramangala and in stark contrast to the city's slick IT image and the temporary tin sheds and their occupants tell a different story altogether.

Seven months ago, 30-year-old Amala's quarters in Ejipura were demolished because they were weak structures. Like her more than 1,500 families were moved into tin sheds by the Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) as a temporary measure. For the residents, the last few months have been hellish.

"Ghar ke saamne drain hai, ussmein bachchon ko keera aur mosquito sab kuch aata hai, usse bimar hote hain. Baarish mein poora paani andar aata hai, bacchon ko kahan sulana. Aur garmi mein bahut garmi ho jata hai tin shed ke andar (There is a drain outside our homes and our children get sick due to mosquito bites. When it rains the entire area gets flooded. During summers it gets very hot inside the tin sheds)," Amala says.

The BBMP began providing tin shed shelters to occupants of the economically weaker section quarters when the first of the 42-block EWS Colony collapsed in 2003.

Since then, three blocks have collapsed, leaving seven people dead.

The BBMP demolished 30 blocks last year, but work on new quarters is yet to begin.

"There was competition between these two and one of them was selected by the corporation and the other person has gone to the court. It has to be decided by he court and only after that we can take up construction," SN Nagaraju, Joint Commissioner, BBMP, Bangalore East, says.

In the meantime, the residents of Ejipura can only wonder at the mismanagement and the civic authority's negligence in having allowed usage of substandard material to build the houses in the first place.

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