Principal secretary to Haryana govt for urban local bodies department P Raghavendra Rao talks to HT.
There is a huge migrant population in Gurgaon. What makes them come to the city?
There are a lot of small scale industries in and around Gurgaon, which provide employment opportunities for a large number of people. Besides, the IT-BPO industry attracts the educated class.
Most migrants live in urbanised villages that do not have good civic amenities. What are the government’s plans for this section?
There are two issues here. We cannot do anything for people living in unauthorised colonies as the Punjab and Haryana High Court has prohibited any sort of work in these areas for now and the matter is sub-judice.
For the authorised colonies, the central government has introduced Rajiv Awas Yojana to make the cities slum-free. We have initiated pilot projects for housing and infrastructure development in four districts including Sirsa, Rohtak, Yamunanagar and Ambala. A proposal for Faridabad is also at its final stage.
Similarly, a proposal for Gurgaon has been prepared and is in the process of being submitted to the Centre.
Many migrants live as tenants without any proper verification in place. Residents from neighbouring condominiums complain of water and electricity theft. What are your comments on this?
The local authorities and police have been instructed to take appropriate action regarding tenant verification and the required procedure has been initiated in Gurgaon.
Meanwhile, residents must complain to the authorities if they find any suspicious activity in their localities. My only concern is that those people who are following the law of the land should not be harassed.
What is the importance and contribution of this section of the population towards the development of Gurgaon?
Everybody residing and working in a city contributes to its development and they are an important part of the urban space. While they do exert pressure on the available resources they are indispensable for the city’s functioning. We are planning to address the genuine grievances of this section and focus on providing affordable housing and good civic infrastructure for the growing migrant population of Gurgaon.
(As told to Himabindu Reddy)