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Rahul Gandhi’s bargain all but generous, feel slum dwellers

Gupta now lives in a 1-BHK apartment of 269 sqft. The building came up on the same land. To him, Rahul Gandhi's words don't make sense.

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Varun Singh

Updated: Mar 11, 2019, 06:05 AM IST

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To many slum dwellers, the promise made by Congress president Rahul Gandhi is all but generosity. To the rest, it's a hope. If not 500 sqft, 400 sqft at least is a possibility.

One Kishore Gupta, who used to stay in a 64 sqft small house in Worli, decided with his neighbours to give away their old building for redevelopment. Gupta now lives in a 1-BHK apartment of 269 sqft. The building came up on the same land. To him, Rahul Gandhi's words don't make sense.

"My new house is spacious. I don't know about 500 sqft and if such a promise will materialise. Politicians make tall promises, but people like us hardly matter. Today, I have a better house than the one where I used to stay."

Under the slum rehabilitation scheme, every slum dweller is eligible for a 300 sqft house along with an attached toilet bathroom. Most of them live in smaller homes with common toilets.

N Salunkhe, a slum dweller from Worli, is waiting for rehabilitation. He first heard about slum rehabilitation as a kid in 1995. Now, he is a father and his slum is as it is.

"Politicians remember us when it's an election year. We understand that we are voters and also in good numbers. Hence, everyone wants to keep us in good books. It has become difficult to believe such promises any further," he said.

While many are sceptical of political promises, there are few who feel that some hope remains.

"The 500 sqft project sounds good. All the political parties are the same. The current offer of 300 sqft by the government is small, but, at the same time, 500 sqft is a dream. If not 500 sqft, we should be given at least 400 sqft homes," said Kiran Raje, a slum dweller from Jijamata Nagar.

ONE FOR MANY

  • Under slum rehabilitation scheme, every slum dweller is eligible for a 300 sqft house along with an attached toilet bathroom. Most of them live in smaller homes with common toilets
     
  • To many, the promise made by Congress president Rahul Gandhi is all but generosity
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