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NGT raps govt for not using funds for slum removal

“What did you (Delhi govt) do in all these years? After 2003 you did nothing. You received the money from everybody and kept it with you for a good number of years,” a Bench, headed by NGT chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar, said.

The observation came after the Delhi Urban Shelter Improvement Board (DUSIB) sought to put the onus on the transport behemoth, telling the Bench that the Railways had given Rs 11.25 crore to it for the relocation of jhuggis in 2003- 2004 and, as per the 2015 Delhi Slum and JJ Rehabilitation and Relocation policy, it was the land owning agency (railways) that was responsible for rehabilitation of slums.

But Additional Solicitor General Pinky Anand and advocate Om Prakash, appearing for the Railways, said that rehabilitation was a state subject and money has been lying with DUSIB but they have not utilised it till date.

After the receipt of money, 257 jhuggi jhopri (JJ) dwellers were rehabilitated by the Slum and JJ Department by spending Rs 52 lakh, the DUSIB said, adding at that time, the Slum Relocation Policy provided for allotment of 18 sqm plots to the eligible jhuggi dwellers.

“However, around 7,750 plots of slum and JJ Department were given to DDA on loan basis for relocation of JJ cluster at Yamuna Pushta. These plots were supposed to come back to the slum & JJ Department. However, DDA has not returned the same.

“In the meanwhile, a new Master Plan was introduced in 2007. The Master Plan envisaged allotment of flats instead of plots to relocated JJ dwellers. The DUSIB Act came into force in the year 2010,” it said.

The DUSIB further said that at present, it had a number of flats constructed at Baprola and the department was prepared to start the relocation process of jhuggi basti at Azadpur and Lawrence Road, which have 389 jhuggis. 

“Flats at Baprola, near the Delhi-Haryana border, have been constructed under the the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM). The cost of each flat is Rs 22,03,000. The Government of India has contributed an amount of Rs 82,00,000 for each flat under JNNURM. Thus, the net cost of each flat is Rs 21,20,400. In terms of the scheme, the contribution of the JJ dweller for a flat has to be Rs 1,12,000 and the land owning agency which in this case is Railways has to pay Rs 20,08,400 per flat,” DUSIB said.

It said it was willing to pay interest at the rate of 7 per cent per annum, which comes to over Rs 9.51 crore. Thus, the total amount is Rs 20.25 crore against which 101 flats can be allotted at present.
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