Living on the edge, literally | mumbai | Hindustan Times
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Living on the edge, literally

Residents of Saki Naka are accustomed to landslides. There have been at least 25 landslides, which have claimed more than 200 lives in 17 years, reports Serena Menon.

mumbai Updated: Oct 07, 2009 02:04 IST
Serena Menon

Just like the monsoons, they come every year. Residents of Saki Naka are accustomed to landslides. There have been at least 25 landslides, which have claimed more than 200 lives in 17 years.

Slumdwellers live precariously on a slope, each shanty leaning on the next one for support in what has been declared as one of the most accident prone areas by the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC).

After the landslide on 90-feet road in September, which claimed 10 lives, the government declared a compensation of Rs 1 lakh for the kin of the dead and Rs 50,000 for those hurt.

But slum dwellers of the area, which falls under the Chandivli constituency, are fed up of announcements. Social activist and resident Anil Galgali (34) feels that the government should relocate slumdwellers. “The plot on 90 feet road is reserved for the hospital but has slums. The government should have a long-term plan to deal with monsoon related accidents,” said Galgali, a resident of Shivaji Nagar.

The slums of Chandivli, which has a mix of Maharashtrians and minorities, was a Congress votebank when it was part of the Kurla constituency.

The area is a maze of shanties with the metro slated to run through it.

Property dealer Sammeer Sheth (34), who owns over 300 acres of land around Chandivli said, only builders and developers take care of infrastructure.

“The slum situation became intense in the 1980s and nothing significant has been done since then,” said Sheth.