Wrong to use DDA, police for demolition: CM tells LG
NEW DELHI: Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Thursday slammed Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal for the demolition of Kathputli Colony here and said it was wrong to use the Delhi Development Authority (DDA) and Delhi Police for "such a brutal activity".
"People's homes have been brutally demolished. Young girls are in the streets. One kid has died. I request the LG that it is not correct to use police and DDA officials to put across such a brutal activity," Kejriwal said, after he visited the colony along with Delhi Transport Minister Kailash Gahlot.
The Chief Minister said that his government has also rehabilitated many slum dwellers, but they have happily left their homes and moved to properly built houses. "This way, by ruining your people, what do you wish to establish here?" he questioned.
Kejriwal also spoke to Baijal and requested him to put an end to "this cruelty towards the poor". He added that his government would make arrangements for food, water and tents in the area so that people do not face any more problems.
"The government was elected by the poor, not the rich. We are here to work for the poor," he said.
In 2009, the then Delhi government had announced the redevelopment project for Kathputli Colony, which was the first in-situ redevelopment project in the country. The plan included better housing complexes, schools, and primary healthcare centres to the residents of the colony.
As per the plan, DDA and a private builder finalised a deal, as per which 60 per cent of a 5.2 hectare piece of land would be marked for rehabilitation, while 40 per cent would be retained by the builder to construct Delhi's tallest building – a 52-storey skyscraper of luxury flats.
The Delhi government stated in its Master Plan Delhi-2021 that one hectare of land would be enough to house 600 families.
Kathputli Colony, spread over 14-acre land, was home to puppeteers, magicians, singers and musicians. It has been demolished by the DDA to make way for redevelopment with the help of a private developer.