With Delhi in the grip of intense cold, the Delhi High Court on Tuesday proposed using vacant government buildings for providing temporary shelter to the homeless.
The court also asked the Delhi Government and the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) to take urgent steps to provide shelter to the homeless, wherever they have carried out demolition work. A Bench headed by Chief Justice A.P. Shah directed the MCD to make sure no eviction would take place until an alternative arrangement was provided.
“It is astonishing you are beautifying every pavement... of the city as if the visitors during the Games would examine the whole area. You are spending blindly,” the court told the government lawyer.
“Do you think this beautification will increase your prestige in the world and for that you can throw women and children on the streets without shelter in this chilling winter?” the bench added.
The bench also sought details about how much the government was spending on the beautification drive.
The court had taken cognisance of a December 10 report in HT — ‘200 families left out in the cold’ — on over 200 families evicted from Old Delhi.
Government lawyer Najmi Waziri said the chief secretary had convened a meeting on Wednesday to discuss short-term action plan for rehabilitation of the destitute.