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Lahore: Call to give ownership rights to Katchi Abadis
10-30-2009, 08:58 AM
Post: #1
Lahore: Call to give ownership rights to Katchi Abadis
THE government must give ownership rights to residents of Katchi Abadis (slum localities) and provide alternative housing to the dwellers of Katchi Abadis which had been razed.

The Women Workers Help Line (WWHL) and the Joint Action Committee Katchi Abadi demanded this during a press conference at the Lahore Press Club on Thursday. Besides others, representatives from seven Katchi Abadis in Lahore also addressed.

WWHL Chairperson Azra Shad said that according to the Katchi Abadi Department figures there were over 3,000 Katchi Abadis in 2003 in Pakistan with a population approximately 7 million people while in 1985 the number of Katchi Abadis was 2,302 with 5.5 million population. So there was always increasing trend in the number of Katchi Abadis, she said.

WWHL General Secretary Bushra Khaliq said Katchi Abadis regularisation programmes initiated by different governments could not check the pace of emergence of Katchi Abadis. Though the governments made considerable efforts during 1985 to 1990 and in 2006 to address the issue but mostly measures were short-sighted measures and aimed at getting political mileage. The issue was never addressed in the broader context of the housing for the poor, she said.

The Joint Action Committee and WWHL presented the charter of demands which said the government should develop housing schemes on priority basis for homeless people and allocate 25 percent quota for the working class in housing schemes. The government must give ownership rights to residents of all Katchi Abadis. Alternative housing should be provided to the residents of those Katchi Abadis which had been demolished. All the Katchi Abadis should be provided with basic amenities, including electricity, water supply, sewerage, education and health facilities. Katchi Abadi residents each should be provide with 3-marla plots. The government should build residential flats for low-income families within one year.

Rabia Bajwa, advocate, Rafaqat Bibi, representative of Dhobi Ghat Katchi Abadi, Zahid Anjum, representative of Daras Bare Mian Katchi Abadi, Riffat Maqsood, representative of Ghosia Colony Katchi Abadi, Zahra Bibi, representative of Bangla Taj Colony Rest House, Shahdara, Katchi Abadi, Mubarak Ali, representative of Railway Line Badami Bagh Kachi Abadi, Mian Iftikhar, representative of Harbanspura Katchi Abadi and Abdul Shakoor, representative of Shadman Katchi Abadi) also spoke.

http://www.thenews.com.pk/daily_detail.asp?id=205853
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