Since more than half the land in Dharavi’s Sector 3 is owned by private parties, the Dharavi Redevelopment Authority (DRA) has now proposed that this sector should be redeveloped through the Cluster Development Model.
A total of 12,600 slums have to be rehabilitated in Sector 3, which comprises 45 hectares. The sector consists of areas like Chamda Bazar, Vikhe Patil Nagar and AKG Nagar, and the authority has proposed that it be divided into 32 units, and that developers be appointed for each one.
According to a senior official of the authority, “Redeveloping the entire sector in one go would have taken decades as acquiring private properties is a herculean task. If we allow revamp of individual buildings, the whole planning would have been in tatters. Hence we decided to do it in clusters so that some uniformity is maintained.”
The plan came after DRA last month asked the state government to exclude Sector 3 from the project. However, there were apprehensions that such a move would derail the entire scheme, as all the other sectors are likely to demand that they too be excluded.
The Rs15,000 crore Dharavi Redevelopment Project (DRP), mooted on February 4, 2004 to turn India’s largest slum into a plush township, has been courting controversy for years. Things came to such a head that the state cancelled the global tenders and handed over Sector 5 to Maharashtra Housing and Area Development Authority (Mhada) for redevelopment. Mhada is set to start construction from May.
The Dharavi Bachao Samiti, which states it stands for transparency in the whole process, has expressed unhappiness over the manner in which the redevelopment process is being handled.
“There is confusion and the plan changes every second day. We, the residents, for whom the scheme is being implemented, are being kept in the dark,” said Milind Tulaskar, secretary, Dharavi Bachao Samiti.