Friday, June 3, 2011
Saturday, July 26, 2008
Struggle Against Abolition of Bhati Mines
“--Memorandum from Villagers of Bhati Mines
Sub:- An appeal for protection of more than 20,000 people who suffered a lot in 1947 at the time of ‘Indo-Pak’ division and who were officially settled in 1976 in village Bhatti Mines ( Bhagirath Nagar ) which is on the verge of cruel demolition mission because of Delhi Govt. putting false evidences against the village in the Honourable Supreme Court:-
We want to draw your kind attention towards the village Bhatti Mines ( Bhagirath Nagar) in South Delhi near Mehrauli. The Delhi government putting false and unauthentic evidences in Supreme Court obtained an order on 9th April, 1996 to demolish this village. This village Bhatti Mines ( Bhagirath Nagar) was settled for the Pakistani Hindu Refugees by Sanjay Ganghi S/o Ex-Prime Minister Indira Gandhi. Settling this village Bhatti Mines (Bhagirath Nagar) in 1976 Govt. of India showed her generosity and kindness towards the Pakistani Hindu Refugees. But it is very surprising that Congress Party led Govt. of India & Govt. of Delhi are bent to destroy this village Sanjay Colony, Bhatti Mines ( Bhagirath Nagar) which is colonized on the name of Late great leader Shri Sanjay Gandhi Ji.
The result of this will be very severe. All the residents, children, grown-ups, youths and women of this village Bhatti Mines (Bhagirath Nagar) are very restless and without sleep. They see even in dream the Delhi Govt as “Yam Raj”, the death god.
The supreme court must enquire who enriched the environment in the ridge around our village Bhatti Mines (Bhagirath Nagar) which the Govt. is going to demolish on the name of development of environment in the ridge misinterpreting our this real village as slum (Jhugi-Jhopri). The Govt. have planted only a few plants to enrich environment spending lakhs of rupees in the last 15 years.
While we, residents of village Bhatti Mines (Bhagirath Nagar) have densely planted the trees and watered them with purchased water spending our earned money with hard labour. Living proof of this are many trees 30-40 years old, in our village Bhatti Mines (BhagirathNagar).Recently on Aug 12, 2006, under the plantation mission of Dera Sachcha Sauda (Sirasa) Green ‘S’ welfare fore. Planted more than 5000 saplings in our village Bhatt Mines (Bhagirath Nagar) green the environment and for our love to the greenery.
We want to draw your attention that with a petition having false and unauthentic evidences an order was obtained by supreme court to relocate this village Bhatti Mines ( Bhagirath Nagar) on the name of ‘Ridge’ in 1996. The population of India was 20 crores when the Ridge Act was enacted in 1927. The population is increased by 6 times while the inhabiting area of India is not increased. The British made this act for their rights and protection in accordance with I.P.C. 1908. Today we live in free India but the impression of slavery is still in our thinking.
We, people of ‘Od’ Hindu community have suffered a lot pain at the time of Indo-Pak division in1947. We came in India from Pakistan having been robbed of all our things there. With us many people and laborers of Rajasthan, Haryana, UP, Bihar especially ‘Kumhar’ [Picture 3.3] caste share their life with us. We and our people and our guardians live here with hard labour and all the few money saved is spent to make a shelter here. We laborers have contributed a lot in digging and making canals, water reservoirs, protection of forests etc.
There is a provision that Govt. of India should direct state Governments to provide land (Pattas) of 120 sq. mts. for persons without houses and according to the Panchayati Raj act 1952, landless farmers and people should be allotted 5 Bigha lands for cultivating purpose. Do we residents of Bhatti Mines really not come under any above mentioned category?
In 1975, name of our village was Bhagirath Nagar ( Sikta Nagar). In the voter list of parliamentary elections in 1979, name of our village Bhagirath Nagar is listed in Part 333-B, 555/1979. permits of S.T.A. buses are renewed in the name of our village Bhatti Mines (Bhagirath Nagar) till now We villagers had our own mines in 1970. We had our licenses (Token) to run the mines. We people digging the rocks and mines and drawing BAJRI (Red Sand) from them contributed a lot in the developments of Delhi and the whole nation. After sometimes our mines were kept under control of D.S.I.D.C.
The settle of village Bhatti Mines ( Bhagirath Nagar) was colonized by the order of then Prime Minister Late Smt. Indra Gandhi Ji. Late Shri Sanjay Gandhi Ji with Hnourable Lt. Governor Sh. Jag Mohan Ji laid a foundation stone on December 12, 1976 and 3000 Pucca quarters were planned to be constructed. After the death of Late Shri. Sanjay Gandhi Ji the development process of our village was stopped.
In the Gram Panchayat election in 1983, the election was also held in our villagae and a deputy Pradhan ( Sh. Saty Prakash Ji) and other seven members were elected then.
In our village on November 22, 1987, then Panchayat Director Sh. Jafferi Ji, M.P. Bharat Singh Ji, Executive Councilor Ch. Prem Singh Ji ( Present Speaker of Delhi
Legislative Assembly), village head of Picture 6.1Sh. Kiran Pal Ji and deputy Pradhan ( Sh. Saty Prakash Ji) distributed us authorized plots of 120 Sq. Mtr. and we have the related legal Ch. Prem Singh Ji, Speaker of Delhi Legislative Assembly, has written letters to Hon’ble Lt. Governor of Delhi Sh. B. L. Joshi Ji, Hon’ble President of AICC Smt. Sonia Ganghi Ji, Urban development Minister of Govt. of NCT Delhi Mr. A. K. Walia Ji, Union Minister of State for Urban development Govt. of India Mr. Ajay Maken Ji. In the letters he has made the request that residents of this village were distributed ‘PATTA’ land by him as executive councilor (Development) in 1987 under Prime Minister’s 20 Point Promgramme for making use of this land as a residential purpose. He has especially made a request to regularize this village Bhatti Mines ( Bhagirath Nagar ) as other colonies are still being regularized. Meanwhile Delhi Govt. listed our village as J. J. Slum, and our permanent ration cards were changed to J. J. Slum cards We could not understand then the conspiratory planning of Delhi Govt.
With television satellite on April 9, 1996, we knew that an order was given by Supreme Court to relocate our village misinterpreting us as encroachers. We opposed this inhuman action and wanted to know from chief secretary of Delhi Govt. the real facts behind relocation but we were kept in dark without any true information.
The name of our village is listed in the list of 1071 colonies list no. 820 for regularization in 1993. A resolution was passed then for this purpose by Delhi Govt. From 1996 to 2005 many documents and affidavits Picture 9 and 9.1were presented in the Supreme Court by Delhi Govt. and finally an order was passed on February 7, 2006 to transfer our village Bhatti Mines ( Bhagirath Nagar). In our village Bhatti Mines ( Bhagirath Nagar) 96% of our houses are PUCCA built by bricks, cement, sand and concrete and this village Bhatti Mines ( Bhagirath Nagar) is not a J. J. Slum. The Delhi Govt. always kept the Honourable Supreme Court in dark regarding our village.
Facilities Available in our Village
In 1977 a Nagar Nigam Primary School in 3 acre was built. Nearly 2500 students are being benefited by the school.
In 1985 a Govt. Co - Ed. Sr. Sec. School in 6 acre was constructed. Presently 1000 students are benefited by this school.In 1980 an Ayurvedic hospital in 1.5 acre was constructed and people are provided health service. In 2001 a P.H.C. (Primary Health Centre) [Picture 13 and 13.1 ] was built with 50 lakhs rupees Do the facilities of Veterinary Hospital [Picture 14 ], Community Centre [Picture 14.1 ], Underground Water Reservoirs [Picture 14.2 ], Tube-Wells [Picture 14.3 ], Pucca Roads [Picture 14.4 ], Drainage [Picture 14.5 ], Street Lights [Picture 14.6 ], D.T.C. and S.T.A. Facilities [Picture 14.7, 14.8 and 14.9 ] (Routes are 558 [ Karampura to Bhatti Mines] ,523 [ Dhola Kuan to Bhatti Mines ] , 545 [ Uttam Nagar to Bhatti Mines ] , 622 [ Shahdra to Bhatti Mines ], 508 [ Raghuveer Nagar to Bhatti Mines ] ), 3 Fair Price Ration Card Shops [Picture 14.10 ], 3 Carosine Oil Depots, a Police Post [Picture 14.11 ] not show our village Bhatti Mines (Bhagirath Nagar) a developed village?
Why the just neighbouring Farm Houses [Picture 15, 15.1 and 15.2 ] of rich people (who have really intruded the ridge) are kept out of ridge area?
· We want to know from the high Govt. officials and great leaders of democracy if being a labourers means being deprived of right of simple living.
· In spite of all the development facilities, the Delhi Govt. have stopped all the developed programmes in our village Bhatti Mines ( Bhagirath Nagar) since 1996 and condition of our life is now just like a hell.
· Some other Pictures of our village which show it is a real village not J. J. Slum.
Following are the relevant questions showing the irresponsible works of Delhi Govt.
1. Why and how was the officially settled village in 1976 kept under ridge area in 1991?
2. The Supreme Court must enquire who enriched the environment the villagers of Bhatti Mines or the government.
3. In Gram Panchayat election in 1983 the village Bhatt Mines (Bhagirath Nagar) was a part of Bhatti Gram Sabha. In that election a Deputy Pradhan Sh. Satya Prakash Ji and 7 members were elected from Bhatti Mines village. So why our village is under demolition mission unjustly?
4. Are all the village of Delhi treated as J.J. Slum after expiry of Panchayati Raj? If no, then why partial behaviour with Bhatti Mines village?
5. In Bhatti Mines village there are, a Primary School running in two shifts, Govt. Co-Ed. Sr. Secondary School, An Ayurvedic Hospital, A Police Post, A Veterinary Hospital, P.H.C. etc. Do these facilities not show Bhatti Mines village a developed village? The Govt. is going to demolish this village which is so developed with crores of rupees of our nation. Is it not misuse and irresponsible use of money and people of the country? After all the money comes from the hard work of labourers and taxes paid by simple citizens of India.
6. Why and now the neighbouring farm house of rich people who has really encroached the ridge are kept out of ridge?
7. How and why were the original ration cards made in 1980-81 transferred to J.J. Slum ration cards in 1990?
8. The name of village Bhatti Mines was kept in the list of 1071 colonies to be regularized in 1993. Now how it is as J.J. Slum?
9. Villagers of Bhatti Mines have invested all their money in this village earned by their money in this village not considered as encroacher from the year 1975 to 1996? During this period residents have spent all their money in the development of their village Bhatti Mines. Now they will be penniless after learning their village.
10. Asola wild life sanctuary was notified on Oct. 10, 1986. At that time area of the sanctuary was 4707 acre. In 1990 after closer mines of Bhatti area the new area of 2166 acre was also joint to the sanctuary. And existence of our village Bhatti Mines is since 1976. So why was our village not kept out of ridge area?
11. Delhi Govt. is going to demolish our village Bhatti Mines declaring it as ridge and getting an order from the Supreme Court putting unreasonable and false evidences against our village we villagers of Bhatti Mines are very angry with the Govt. and we are face to face with the Govt. to fight and save our village.
Dr. Iqbal Malik, Director- Vatavaran, Delhi and Ex- Member Ridge Management Board Delhi reports in Indian Express dated October 31, 1996, in column Letters to The Editor she said, “ The Asola and Bhatti Wild Life Sanctuary on the Southern Ridge has inherent problems. The first part of the sanctuary was notified as a sanctuary on October 09, 1986. Its total area was 4,707 acres. In 1991, an additional 2,166 acres was notified as wildlife sanctuary under Section 18 of the Wildlife (Protection) Act. Thus, the total area of the sanctuary is 6,873 acres.
The Bhatti sanctuary has three villagers-Sanjay Colony, Indira Nagar and Balbir Nagar. All the three came into existence at least 30 to 40 yrs. before the area was notified as a wildlife sanctuary.
The Delhi State Mineral Development Corporation started mining activity in the area in the 1960s and continued till 1991 when the area was notified as a wildlife sanctuary.
About 5,000 families live in the three villages. An estimated population of over 25,000 is being forced to leave the area. If these people had started staying in the area after it was declared a sanctuary, the authorities had a right to evict them. But as it was the other way round, the locals have a right to stay on. Why should the villagers pay for the mistakes made by the authorities in declaring the wrong area as a sanctuary?
For effective management of the sanctuary and betterment of the villagers, the authorities must demarcate these villagers from the sanctuary area. In addition the villagers must be given jobs to guard the sanctuary. This is imperative as the sanctuary is more barren than green.”
In 1976 officially settled this village should be kept out of ridge area and our village should be regularized here like other many colonies.
There should be an enquiry against all the Govt. officials for presenting false evidences for our village in the Supreme Court.
“We need development -- not destruction”
1. Note:-The struggle is continue and fast before. Now again start Karmik Hunger Strike from 14 July, 2006 after 17 days (27 June to 13 July 06) Aamran Anshan (Hunger Strike till death) and 39 days Karmik Hunger Strike.
2. If no attention is given for our true appeal and for our justice, we villagers of BhattiMines will be forced for mass agitation and people’s movement like “Pad Yatra, Dhrana, Rally, and Hunger Strike till death".
President Vice-President General Secretary
Poonam Chand Nand Ram Dalip Kumar
Wednesday, July 23, 2008
About Rati Singh
Delhi School of Social Work (Delhi University) (August 1988-January 1991):
I worked with Gram Mahila Kendra in its rural non-formal education at Burari, in North Delhi.
Alarippu/Disha (August 1991-October 1992):
I worked in the Mahila Samakhya Project being conducted by these two NGOs, in Shaharanpur, Uttar Pradesh. I was a coordinator in the Bal Kendra, and subsequently worked in the field of adult education as well.
Jagriti (November 1992-July 1993):
The NGO was running primary school at Motia Khan Basti, Paharganj, New Delhi. I was working as a teacher.
Salaam Balak Trust (July 1993- September 1994):
I was teaching street children in the Connought Place, New Delhi Railway Station areas.
Ghad Kshetra Majdoor Sangharsh Samiti (October 1994 - April 1998)
I was started imparting non formal education and tailoring classes at Buggawala in Haridwar District, U.P. for girls aged 12-18 years. The programme was discontinued because the girls married and dispersed thereafter. But more significantly, I was involved in the forest people’s struggle for utilization of ‘Bhabbar’ grass for rope making.
I was involved in a school, Savitribai Phule Vidyalaya, being run by Vikalp.
I was involved in the people’s agitation against the proposed Rajaji National Park, the issue being people’s right to access to forest resources.
The state government was accepted the formation of local people’s forest committees in each village, to ensure the proper use of forest resources in the interest of local people.
Jan Pariwahan Panchayat, Lokayan (April 1998 – July 2000)
I was involved in problems of Rickshaw pullers, Rickshaw Mistry (Mechanics) and Rickshaw owners.
Organized awareness program, meetings, advocacy, struggled for their rights.
Established a non-governmental organization for rag pickers and started work in Mehrauli area (Kishan Garh) in the initial level. After one year I left the Lokayan and involved in full-fledged to the work for the rag pickers. For them I was started Non formal School for the children of the rag pickers. Health Checkup programme, Self aid groups for the women, non-formal education for adults, income generating programme like sewing, making of purses and fancy items etc. After two years, government in the name of Bangladeshi citizens has bulldozed the whole area of community. From 2002 I am running two centers, one is adjacent area of mehrauli- Kishan Garh, Vasant Kunj and another is near Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU), Neb Sarai, New Delhi in the rag pickers community.
1. Participated in the Delhi, survey, a programme of Cnetre for the Study of Developing Society (CSDS), August 1998-October 1998 a social scientific study of political opinions and attitudes in Delhi conducted by Lokniti, institute for comparative democracy.
2. Participated in the survey conducted by Oxfam on ‘Violence Against Women’ in 14 states in 2001.
3. One Year Fellowship by Indo German Social Society Service (IGSSS)
4. One Year Felloship by ‘Sruti Foundation’ for activities in slum areas of Noida, U.P..
5. Since 1999, active participation in Narmada Bachao Andolan, National Alliance for People’s Movement (NAPM)
6. Active Member of All India Progressive Women’s Association (AIPWA)
Nehru Yuva Award given by the Late Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi in 1986.
Saksharata Award by Rtracat (Rotary Club) in 2002.
Education: B.A. (Honors)
Abhyudaya, a Delhi based Non Governmental Organization, has been an effort devoted to bring relief, upliftment and empowerment to the most depressed section of unorganized workers. On a broader perspective, Abhyudaya focuses upon an all round development of this distressed, dejected and devalued segment of population. Initiated in 2005, Abhyudaya has targeted the Mehrauli region of Delhi, and established its hold in organizing the quarry workers at Bhatti Mines, and planning non-formal education classes for children in Kishengarh village and Neb Sarai. In both these cases, special care and emphasis was placed on the participation of women and children. The organization has steadily undertaken welfare initiatives at the community level, and pursued persistent advocacy at the national level for immediate results. Over time Abhyudaya has successfully expanded its coverage to a larger area of South Delhi and now established its roots in Neb Sarai, Bhatti Mines, Saket, Vasant Kunj, Kishengarh, Khanpur, Ambedkar Nagar, Sangam Vihar, Malviya Nagar, and Mehrauli.
Abhyudaya is a registered organization (registered in 2002 under the Societies Registration Act, 1860), which began its operations in 1999 under the leadership of Rati Singh. Recognizing poverty as the abiding reality of all third world nations, Abhyudaya had vowed to emerge as an agent of change for the sidelined majority in India. It aims to secure human rights, dignity and social integration of the marginalized and neglected workers.
Abhyudaya has been working in the Mehrauli region of Delhi since 1999, although the contact person has been active as a volunteer in the area since 1990. The Mehrauli region contains the northern limits of the Aravalli range, and it is here that the quarries and mines were located from which construction material was provided to the city of Delhi. Bhatti Mines lies at the southern outskirts of Delhi, within the forested highlands near the border of Haryana. Thus, a large labor force settled in this area to work in the quarries, with a total estimated population of 50,000. Many of the families had migrated from Pakistan at the time of Partition, and the two principal ethnic groups were of Kumhars and Oadhs. But in 1992 the mining was closed down on environmental grounds by the courts. An entire community was abandoned to unemployment, hunger, and growing poverty. To go a step further, this residential area of Bhatti Mines was declared a Ridgeland, and hence all construction as illegal. The village was declared a slum and the issue was dealt as one of land encroachment. The Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) has bulldozed two of the three colonies there, Indira Nagar and Balbir Nagar. The third colony, Sanjay Camp, will be evicted any day now. Almost 4,000 families have been left homeless by the demolitions, while resettlement was provided to only 700 families - in Bawana and Holambi Kalan. The fate of the remaining 3,300-odd families is unclear.
· To allow justice and dignity to the target community. Special operation to unite the people of Bhatti Mines to fight for their rightful right on land.
· To provide employment opportunities in the target area, with special emphasis on women’s role and economy.
· Guarantee self-reliance to women through development of handwork and craft. This includes provision for professional training for the women for development of skills and efficiency of results.
· To provide adequate recognition to their work and provision for its remuneration.
· Literacy programs for children and adults, all ages, with special emphasis on women education.
· Train young women in health awareness, sex education, and AIDs to promote self-sufficiency.
· To fight against cases of exploitation against women, and make legal arrangements to guarantee them justice.
· Organize women into self-help groups that will encourage savings for the future through micro-credit schemes and an independent savings bank.
· In case of child labor Abhyudaya plans to fight for the rights of children, allow them their basic necessities and guarantee them formal or non-formal education. There will be provision for protection against hazards and injury due to the nature of their work. Exploitation of any type shall be dealt legally.
Campaigns and Movements
· Abhyudaya has associated itself to dilemma faced by the villagers of Bhatti mines and directed them to fight for their land. The remnants in Bhatti Mines have been unified in this fight, and till date they have not allowed the police and officials to go beyond the main road connecting their houses. Thus Abhyudaya’s effort has indeed been transformed into a people’s movement.
· The women in Bhatti Mines suffer from the double burden of earning a livelihood as well as looking after domestic chores. In providing a solution to this problem, Abhyudaya has successfully exploited the creative talent they possess in the skill of stitching and embroidery on cloth. Attractive patchwork from small pieces of waste cloth making different sizes of quilts and sheets, are excellent examples of their traditional arts and crafts from Sindh and Multan. In this manner the women are able to earn along with performing their household tasks.
· Abhyudaya has also been working to provide the necessary remuneration and recognition to the craft. Display of these items in exhibitions and popular outlets such as People Tree has been acknowledged and found a positive response.
· Abhyudaya has been consistent in spreading social consciousness among the people of Bhatti Mines. It has time and again encouraged people to embrace the necessities of education, employment and hard work for a brighter tomorrow.
· Women have often been exploited and discriminated for long in this area. Due to strict preservation of custom and tradition, women have lost their identity and dignity. Abhyudaya has been helping all such women, and provided them the necessary strength and platform to fight for justice.
· Educational programs for children living in shacks in Kishengarh village. Classes were held in shifts: 80 children taught in the morning shift, about 20 adolescent girls and adult women in the afternoon, and a group of 15 boys and male adults in the evening batch.
· Craft training for girls and women in Kishengarh introduced as home based income generation program.
· Literacy program for rag pickers in Neb sarai. A school for 50 children is being run very successfully with two young voluntary teachers living in the same locality.
Women in Bhatti Mines have effectively realized a multi faceted development of skills, allowing them to be economically independent alongside carrying their routine household responsibilities.
Children of most families are going to schools. Many others are being helped by other NGOs. Young girls who don’t study have been given training in tailoring and embroidery to enhance their skills. They now do embroidery on duppatta, cushion covers, bed sheets, bags which have a large demand in the market.
Waste management of cloth has found a market for patchwork in bed sheets, belts and bags.
The Society had acted to restore peaceful living environ in some families, settling property disputes, and focused on the positive role of the Society.
Educational classes in Kishengarh resulted in admission of 50 children to regular MCD schools.
Plans for future
To fight for the rights of the people of Bhatti Mines and their lawful authority on their land.
To constantly upgrade the level and quantum of work so as to provide employment to all women at home.
To allow training in the area so that women are able to learn the skills and specialize in desired fields.
To ensure every child either goes to school or takes non-formal education through NGOs or other volunteers.
In case of rag pickers a program for overall development of children to educate them about their rights and their alternatives for future.
Development of mahilabadi – a system under which the government builds an institution, exclusively for women development, including hostel, training centers, school, crèches, guaranteeing them safety and justice. It is aimed to be a home for women in distress, where the needy are equipped with emotional and physical support to give a justifiable direction to her life.
The youth will be given vocational training in computers, and other technical trades, and also encouraged to participate in progressive cultural events.
Abhyudaya is not just an organization or a NGO, but a movement…a drive…a progression - aimed to make our world a place of equality and prosperity. The issues and complexities prevalent today have to be dealt by sensitizing the environment, and allowing space for one and all. Development can never be achieved at the expense of someone else…the mistakes of past need correction now, and this is what we vow to achieve as ABHYUDAYA.