Day 3: Medha Patkar is down, but not out
On the third day of the indefinite hunger strike, launched as a mark of protest against the government's controversial slum rehabilitation policies, social activist Medha Patkar's health deteriorated but her resolve to fight for residents of Golibar area did not waver.mumbai Updated: May 23, 2011 01:55 IST
On the third day of the indefinite hunger strike, launched as a mark of protest against the government's controversial slum rehabilitation policies, social activist Medha Patkar's health deteriorated but her resolve to fight for residents of Golibar area did not waver.
"She (Patkar) vomited twice and is suffering from fever. She refuses to allow the doctor to attend to her," said Devan Nair, a resident of the Ganeshkripa society in Golibar area, Khar.
Patkar went on a hunger strike on Friday at the Kherwadi police station after the police detained around 70 people, including her while they were walking towards Golibar area to launch an agitation.
She wrote about her fast and her demands and faxed it to the chief minister from the police station. Even after her release on Friday evening, Patkar continued to fast at the Ganeshkripa society with five members chain-fasting with her.
"I will not move back. I don't know how long the fight will continue but the government will have to listen to us. We had discussed these issues with the chief minister earlier too, but he has not considered it," said Patkar.
Patkar's mother, Indutai Khanolkar, visited her on Sunday. "I feel happy that my daughter is fighting for a good cause but as a mother I am worried about her health," said Khanolkar.
Medha and slum dwellers across the city are demanding that the state government scrap the controversial 3K clause of the Maharashtra Slum Areas Act, 1971.
Under this section, the state can directly award the project to a developer without acquiring the consent of 70% of the slum dwellers, a mandatory requirement under other slum rehabilitation projects.
In addition to this, they are demanding that the government investigate all the projects sanctioned under section 3K and cease the demolitions of slums until then. They also want the state to review all the projects sanctioned under Slum Rehabilitation Authority (SRA).
Lastly, they want the Rajiv Awas Yojana to be implemented in Mumbai. Under this scheme, no cut-off dates will be considered to prove eligibility for rehabilitation. Currently, January 1, 1995 is the stipulated cut-off date under the SRA.