By Manish on September 9th 2020
The Supreme Court of India on 31.08.2020 passed an order, in a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) relating to pollution and waste management in Delhi, directing the eviction of “encroachments” – primarily jhuggi-jhopri (JJ) bastis, or slums – on Railway land in the capital. Coming in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic, the order has been subject to legal criticism and has received wide coverage in the media. In this series of Q&A, we deconstruct what exactly the order says, the extent of the displacement it is likely to cause, the legally prescribed procedure for eviction and relocation, and what would be a fair approach going forward.
This note outlines the dynamics and determinants of affordable housing in the Chennai Metropolitan Area, drawing on data from a five-year period (2013-2018). It estimates Chennai’s housing shortage and affordability line, outlines the role of state and private players in supplying affordable housing, and discusses builders’ responses to state incentives aimed at increasing their supply of such housing. It ends with some comments on the post-pandemic market for affordable housing.
In this paper, the authors lay down what they understand as “affordable housing”— a term that can mean many things to many people— and present a set of empirics to locate their understanding of affordability. Following that, they sets out ten dynamics that are often seen to be at the root of why extreme housing inequalities persist in Indian cities. For each, they outline existing debates, suggest policy responses and interventions
and, at times, mark the medium- and long-term structural changes required. Finally, they summarize by a necessary partial translation into action and locate their suggested interventions with particular institutions and different scales of government.