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Temporary Shelters for the Homeless in Delhi: A Study-based Reflection

Social Work Chronicle

Volume 1 Issue 2

Published: 2012
Author(s) Name: Sanjai Bhatt, Ghazala Jamil | Author(s) Affiliation: Department of Social Work, Univ. of Delhi, Delhi (1st Author is Prof. & 2nd Author is Asst. Prof.)
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Abstract

Delhi is a city of opportunities but also a city of glaring inequities. The most marginal contours of the urban inequity are inhabited by groups, such as the homeless, that are almost dehumanized and live in subhuman conditions. As the problem of urban homelessness is exacerbating the most shocking aspect of the problem is its manifestation in the everyday lives of the homeless and the inadequate attention it received for a long time from both, the state and the civil society. This research article is an assessment of the temporary shelters put up for the first time in Delhi in the winter of 2010-11 under the aegis of Mission Convergence of Delhi government in partnership with NGOs. The study brings to light, how the temporary shelters, even though grossly inadequate, act as a source of succour to the destitute and homeless who are otherwise forced to live in absolute dearth of any welfare. We discuss the diminished welfare state and the equally diminished capacity of the homeless to expect or claim any welfare. And, finally we dwell briefly upon the possible ways in which we can respond to the situation.

Keywords: Urban Poverty, Homelessness, Temporary Shelters, Mission Convergence

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