Over the years, a large number of bastis in Delhi have been demolished without due notice. Local, national, and international laws protect the rights of people living in bastis and others who may face the threat of eviction. Below is a list of these rights, and things that people should keep in mind if they are evicted or are facing the threat of eviction.
Rights of Basti Residents:
The following rights have been guaranteed to basti dwellers in Delhi under various laws and policies, including the Constitution of India, Delhi Slum & JJ Rehabilitation & Relocation Policy 2015, judgements of the Supreme Court of India, and the Delhi High Court. Residents of bastis hold all these rights regardless of the land owning and/or evicting agency. (For more information, visit RESOURCES):
- You have the right to receive an eviction notice well in advance (?)
- You have the right to know the reason for eviction and for what public purpose the said land is needed.
- You have the right to receive rehabilitation, in appropriate housing, if you have been living at the site of eviction since before 2015. For a detailed list of criteria for eligibility, please see the DUSIB 2015 Policy here.
- Demolition cannot be conducted at night, during board exams, or during extreme weather conditions.
- DUSIB has to provide potable water, sanitation, and basic health facilities at all instances of demolition.
- The evicting agency needs to conduct a survey in accordance with the law before an eviction. The eligibility list needs to be published and residents who are found ineligible must be given an opportunity to appeal the said decision.
- Eviction can only take place after a resettlement plan has been prepared with “meaningfully engagement” of the concerned community to determine an appropriate plan for relocation/in-situ rehabilitation/in-situ upgradation.
- Resettlement should be provided either at the site of eviction or within a radius of 5 kilometers from the site. Only in exceptional circumstances can the agency approve accommodation beyond this 5 km radius.
- All suitable government facilities are to be provided at the rehabilitation site, including, among others, facility for admission of children to nearby schools; a dispensary/moholla clinic in the vicinity; a ration shop in the vicinity; and drinking water and sewage facilities
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