‘Games displaced 250,000 people in Delhi’

November 3rd, 2010 - 11:10 pm ICT by IANS  

P. Chidambaram New Delhi, Nov 3 (IANS) Around 250,000 people lost their homes due to evictions and demolitions conducted for security measure taken for the 2010 Commonwealth Games (CWG), a human rights organisation said here Wednesday.

“Most of the demolitions and forced evictions have been characterised by lack of notice and due process, large police presence, destruction of personal possessions by authorities and violence,” said the housing and land rights network (HLRN) in a release.

HLRN said that in a few instances where resettlement has been provided on the outskirts of the capital, the living conditions are grossly inadequate.

The report also mentioned that according to the national association of street vendors of india (NASVI), over 275,000 informal sector workers, including street vendors and ragpickers, lost their livelihoods in Delhi due to the Games.

“An estimated 55,000 vendors were forcibly evicted from their places of work, often with violence,” an NASVI member said.

As revealed in a Right to Information application filed by HLRN, Rs.744 crore from the Scheduled Castes sub-plan were diverted from 2006-07 to 2010-11 to meet CWG-related expenditures.

“This has resulted in lack of development funds for Delhi’s Dalits. Home Minister P. Chidambaram admitted this in the Rajya Sabha and mentioned that the diverted funds would be returned,” added an HLRN member.

Shalini Chaudhary, associate director of HRLN, suggested that the various agencies set up to probe the corruption charges and financial embezzlement in the Games-related projects should also enquire into the gross human rights violations.

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