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Title: Exploring Institutional Mechanisms In Water Supply For Informal Slum Settlements In Megacities of India :Case studies of Purvidinkhera, Kalikapur and Sathe Nagar informal slums
Authors: Bose, Priyanjali
Keywords: School of Habitat Studies
Pranjal Deekshit
Water Supply
Centre for Water Policy, Regulation and Governance
Issue Date: 2018
Abstract: India has been home to 132.42 crores of people (World Population Prospects, 2017). The growing number of population migrating and seeking for job opportunities to the city has led to lack of space as well as resources. About 17 percent of the slum population lives in urban parts of the country (Census of India, 2011). It has been observed that the well off people living within the formal boundary of a city have trouble- free access to sufficient amount of water with the help of previously set up water supply institutional arrangements by Municipal Corporations. However, irrespective of the fact that water is a State’s responsibility, there exists a bottom line of service allocation for that particular marginalized sections of the people which comprises of unskilled labourers (primarily rickshaw pullers, mobile hawkers, construction workers, domestic helpers and newspaper sellers) living within the informal slum settlements (a phenomenon caused due to increasing urbanization), who’re deprived of their right to very basic necessities like water supply services. However, with the recognition of the human rights to water supply services by UN member’s states at the international level, mentioned in article 11 of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR) adopted in General Comment No. 15 in the year 1966, 16th of December where water, has been implicitly derived from the human right to an adequate standard of living. Further under the Article 21, Constitution of India, (Right to Life) the right to get water is an integral part of the Fundamental right of Article 21 under the Indian Constitution, water has been implicitly mentioned as a part of basic necessity. Therefore under human right with the intervention of the slum dweller organizations and non- governmental organizations the vulnerable sections of the people living within the informal slums are supported to achieve their rights to water. Further, the very process of people’s participation in getting access to water supply services as observed highlights the fact of meeting their needs of fulfilling the demands of various purposes like drinking, bathing, washing clothes, cooking etc. Moreover, the Non Governmental Organization performs as a common forum between the slum dweller organizations and local government to form a unique kind of water supply institutions within the informal slum settlements across the country, India. With further involvement of the research topic the particular gap existing within the literature are the recommendations for the formal provisions of water supply services to the informal slum dwellers within the society. The research project hitherto is an attempt to explore the various ways of including these types of water supply institutions existing within the informal slum settlements and also finding out policy recommendations for providing formal water provision to this section of the society. The research illustrates this with the case studies of three informal slum settlements existing within the cities of India namely, Purvidinkhera in Lucknow and Kalikapur in Kolkata and Sathe Nagar in Mumbai which are the sites of informal slum settlements due to burgeoning population. For the purpose of understanding policy recommendations the PIL order of 2012 of PHS vs Brihan Mumbai Municipal Corporation has been referred to which of both ‘National and International importance. The framework has been set up to compare the informal slums of Purvidinkhera in Lucknow and Kalikapur in Kolkata along with the existing policy implementation of PHS in Sathe Nagar in Mumbai. The study is a general observation of the stakeholders from the respective departments within the water supply institutions for informal slums. The research work is not only an attempt to discuss the lesson drawn from right to water but also to look beyond the challenges of formalization and understanding the concepts of maintaining or trying to maintain the existing water supply services for informal slums within a given policy framework in the long run. Above all, the thesis is an endeavour to impart knowledge to the marginalized and vulnerable inhabitants as well as shedding light on their stories of survival and voicing to their right to water and management drawn from informal and formal provisions of water supply services in India.
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