Dharavi residents dream of ‘home in a tower’ as poor network hampers survey | Mumbai news - Hindustan Times
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Dharavi residents dream of ‘home in a tower’ as poor network hampers survey

Apr 02, 2024 05:28 PM IST

Surveyors are currently verifying the documents of Dharavi residents and uploading them against the identification numbers allotted during the first phase.

Mumbai: Vishakha Rane, a resident of the Kamla Raman Nagar neighbourhood near Matunga Road railway station, was all smiles on Monday morning when she spotted officials of the Dharavi Redevelopment Project Pvt Ltd (DRPPL) – a joint venture between Adani Realty and the state government which is redeveloping the Dharavi slums – at her doorstep.

Mumbai, India - April 1, 2024: The second phase of a comprehensive door-to-door survey in Dharavi commenced on April 1. In a 40 to 45 minutes survey for a single hutment the surveyor collected all the documents, finger prints as well as took a measurement of a home and gave a receipt to the owner. The daily target is to complete at least 40 hutments in the given area. The residents are supporting the survey as they are happy to live in a tower, in Mumbai, India, on Monday, April 1, 2024. (Photo by Anshuman Poyrekar/ Hindustan Times) (Hindustan Times)
Mumbai, India - April 1, 2024: The second phase of a comprehensive door-to-door survey in Dharavi commenced on April 1. In a 40 to 45 minutes survey for a single hutment the surveyor collected all the documents, finger prints as well as took a measurement of a home and gave a receipt to the owner. The daily target is to complete at least 40 hutments in the given area. The residents are supporting the survey as they are happy to live in a tower, in Mumbai, India, on Monday, April 1, 2024. (Photo by Anshuman Poyrekar/ Hindustan Times) (Hindustan Times)

“We face many problems in this area, especially during the rainy days,” said Rane, who has been living in the area since 1982. “We (women) need to use the public toilet, but we are happy that we will finally get our own home in a tower. We are supporting the surveyors and providing whatever information they want.”

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Rachana Tandkar, another resident, expressed her happiness in similar terms when surveyors visited her tenement. “I had been waiting for the officers since the morning. We are very happy to be part of the redevelopment scheme that will help us fulfil our dream of making a city like Mumbai our home,” she said.

In the first phase of the survey, which commenced on March 18, occupants of all tenements were given a unique identification number, followed by laser mapping of respective lanes.

The second phase, which started on April 1, comprises a door-to-door survey to determine which among Dharavi’s residents will qualify for free housing during the ensuing redevelopment of Asia’s largest slum. Occupants of the first, second and third floors of tenements will be allotted houses under a rental housing scheme – a first for any slum redevelopment project in the country.

In this phase, surveyors are verifying the documents of residents and uploading them against the identification numbers allotted during the first phase.

DRPPL has formed five teams of six people each to conduct the door-to-door survey. Accordingly, a team of six people are visiting every tenement and verifying documents such as old electricity bills, rent receipts and Aadhaar cards that provide proof of residence.

“Once we verify original documents pertaining to the tenements, we have to scan and upload them on our system. Additionally, we ask residents to submit a photocopy of all the documents,” said Prakash Motkate, a community development officer with DRP. “We are also taking videos of each hutment and measuring them with advanced machinery.”

It takes 45-50 minutes or longer to complete the survey work for a single tenement, more so because of delays in residents receiving one-time passwords owing to poor network. “Since poor connectivity and low visibility are hampering the scanning of documents, surveyors will be equipped with dongles and flashlights tomorrow onwards,” said Motkate.

The survey, which is expected to be completed in eight months, will help create ‘Digital Dharavi’, an advanced library of one of the world’s largest informal settlements.

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