Foundation stone laid for Kathputli Colony redevelopment
Union minister Hardeep Singh Puri, on April 24, 2018, said that the Kathputli Colony residents held an important position in India’s culture and history and assured them that they would have proper houses by the beginning of next year. The housing and urban affairs minister said the redevelopment model had to keep pace with the movement of people from rural to urban areas.
“By 2030, 600 million (60 crore) Indians would be living in urban spaces. The redevelopment of cities has to be done, keeping in mind this fact,” Puri said at the foundation stone-laying ceremony of an in-situ development project at Kathputli Colony. Delhi’s lieutenant governor Anil Baijal was also present at the event, where the residents of the colony, dressed in different costumes, thanked the minister and the Delhi Development Authority (DDA) officials, for the project. Spread over an area of around 14 acres, Kathputli Colony was home to a large number of puppeteers, magicians, singers and musicians and is currently being redeveloped.
It was in the news recently, after the DDA began its demolition drive there, triggering clashes among its residents, activists and the police. “The sealing committee and many others, who work in air-conditioned offices and do not know the ground realities, do not understand that people from rural areas are coming to urban spaces for better opportunities,” Puri said. The minister added that this redevelopment project, which was conceived in 2009, would provide clean, well-planned and habitable units, along with adequate social infrastructure to the people.
“The residents of this colony will be provided newly-constructed houses in the same place they were staying. I will request our prime minister (Narendra Modi), to inaugurate the houses next year,” he said. The redeveloped colony would also have a heritage/exhibition museum, kaushal kala vikas kendra, a multi-purpose hall and other facilities, so that the residents can pursue their art, the DDA said.
It is the first slum in the city to be taken up by the DDA for in-situ (in the same spot) redevelopment, with the help of a private developer, who, in turn, will get a substantial part of land for commercial use. As per the agreement with the private partner in this project, the developer has to construct 2,800 houses for the economically weaker sections (EWS). Each unit has to be of 30.5 sq metres. The contractor will have to provide interim transit camps, with 2,800 porta-cabin dwelling units and other amenities/facilities for the slum dwellers.