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Slum-dwellers to get new houses in the same locality

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The Hindu      18.07.2016 

Slum-dwellers to get new houses in the same locality

The slum clearance board has taken up construction of 26,978 houses

The Tamil Nadu Slum Clearance Board (TNSCB) will be constructing 26,978 in the same locality houses across the State.

“As many as 180 locations across the State have been approved for in situ construction,” said a senior official from TNSCB. “There has been a big demand from people for in situ constructions and we wish to cover the maximum we can,” he added. While 100 houses have been completed, 20,779 houses are being constructed.

In Chennai, 4,662 houses under the Beneficiary Led Individual Construction have been approved. Red Hills, Moolakadai, Koyambedu, and South Madras are among the areas chosen for construction. The construction of 925 houses is in progress.

The cost of the in situ beneficiary-led housing project is Rs. 69,472 lakh. It will be implemented under the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana.

Officials said while they had been providing pattas to slum dwellers, the ones who live on untenable land cannot be regularised, even if they have been living there for generations. “To accommodate people who live on these lands we have built houses in Perumbakkam and Kannagi Nagar,” the official said.

“How can we move to a place which is 40 km away from the city, leaving behind our home, livelihood, and education of our children. We have lived here for generations,” said R. Alamelu, a resident of Govindasamy Nagar, who along with hundreds of residents in the area was on the brink of eviction. While a large number of families in the area were relocated from the locality over the years, Alamelu and others have been fighting it.

“We want in situ construction and have requested the higher authorities for it, time and again. We cannot afford to struggle like our friends in the resettlement colonies,” said S. Jyotsna, a student.

A 2005 pre-feasibility study conducted by TNSCB states that “clearance and relocation of slums costs 10 times more than upgrading at the existing sites”