Mumbai Slums Fight For Water

Slum dwellers demonstrate to protest the lack of water facilities. Access to clean water and sanitation has been recognized as a human right, and is integral to the right to life granted in the Indian Constitution. However, for a large number of people in India, water remains a scarce resource. The issue is heightened in slums, such as the one where Amol, our Community Correspondent in Mumbai, lives. Amol explained to us that water connections have been provided in his slums by the Mumbai Municipal Corporation, but these public taps are usually crowded and badly maintained. As a consequence, water has to brought by a water tanker. The Municipal Corporation sometimes provides this service at a cheap rate, but private companies have also stepped in this business, and charge a much higher rate. To publicly express their anger, NGOs from several Mumbai slums organized a demonstration. 500 slum-dwellers joined the march to protest against the lack of facilities. “A local politician attended the gathering. He promised us water under four days. Time has passed, and there is still no water,” says Amol. In Mumbai’s slums, several dwellers share Amol’s anger and his feeling that politicians have forgotten their lot. “The government has ruled that slums existing prior to 1995 would be provided with water connections, but those who settled after this date will not be equipped. For me there are only human beings, every one needs water,” Amol says.

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