Wednesday, 30 January 2013

EWS Evictions: The Aftermath

The demolitions at the EWS quarters in Ejipura started on 18th Jan 2013. In a matter of a few days, a thriving bustling community of about 1500 homes was razed to the ground. There have been a variety of efforts by various volunteer groups to reach out to the victims by providing water, food and assistance with finding alternate shelters and providing some financial aid to cover part of its costs. 

As of yesterday, on part of one perimeter directly outside the original demolished site there were 34 families who were braving out with their young and old under harsh sun and nowhere to go. The reasons range from not having any identification to avail of some financial assistance, to not having enough money to meet the rest of the required rent deposit before they could move into some other home. 

All this time, the state has provided several assurances of help to those evicted while remaining unbudging on the issue of actually holding off from further eviction drives - now from the streets and footpaths around the razed area.  Even as I type this note, I have heard that police are forcing remaining families out of the area. It is reported that one woman has poured kerosene over herself and tried to commit suicide. 

The photos below were taken yesterday afternoon. They tell their own stories. Can the state do this to its own people? And where can the poor go?

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