STOCK MARKET BSE NSE

350 families reside amid debris of 1,000 houses in Chennai's Sathyavani Muthu Nagar

In December last year, officials from various departments including the PWD, began evicting the families here under the Cooum river eco-restoration project.

Published: 16th November 2020 05:33 AM  |   Last Updated: 16th November 2020 11:02 AM   |  A+A-

A family living amid uncleared debris at Sathyavani Muthu Nagar in Chennai. (Photo| Debadatta Mallick, EPS)

A family living amid uncleared debris at Sathyavani Muthu Nagar in Chennai. (Photo| Debadatta Mallick, EPS)

Express News Service

CHENNAI: Not too long ago, Sathyavani Muthu Nagar was one of the city’s largest slums, bustling with families and their kids. Now, all that remains is uncleared debris of a thousand houses demolished by officials, and around 350 families who live amid it.

In December last year, officials from various departments including the PWD, began evicting the families here under the Cooum river eco-restoration project. Officials continued demolition despite public resistance and a long break due to the lockdown.

So far, they have relocated 1,750 families from here to the Tamil Nadu Slum Clearance Board  tenments in Perumbakkam. However, the remaining 350 families are living a life of uncertainty. After a brief eviction drive that resumed in September resettled around 80 families, the process has come to a halt. The children here study and play amid the debris of houses once occupied by their friends and classmates.

Residents have cleared a small path through the debris for walking. Also, worryingly, with a majority of families relocated, these families are now cut off from basic facilities such as street lights and water supply. "Street lights are working only in a small part of the slum. We, for instance, haven’t had street lights ever since the rest of the families were relocated," said Sathyaraj, a resident.

The families said they walk nearly half a kilometre to fetch water from a public tap as taps closest to them stopped working after the demolition. "We have not received allotments to Perumbakkam yet. We only ask that we are provided houses in the newly-constructed blocks and not the old blocks where we heard the structure is weak and there might be water seepage in the walls," said Sangeetha, another resident.

When contacted, officials said that they are unable to proceed with the resettlement due to the demands put forth by the residents. "We tried to accommodate as many people as possible in the newer blocks but now we are unable to accommodate them in the houses they want specifically. Further, the families here are also at an increased risk of flooding since the upstream of the Cooum river has been widened," said officials.



Comments

Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

IPL_2020
flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp