HC unhappy about govt apathy to night shelters for homeless

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Mumbai, July 8: The Bombay High Court today expressed unhappiness over the laxity shown by Maharashtra government and Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai for not providing adequate number of night shelters for the homeless people in the city.

A division bench headed by Justice Abhay Oka said the authorities had not reserved enough plots for night shelters. The Government Pleader informed that a total of 81 plots had been reserved for night shelters in the proposed development plan (DP) for the entire city.

homeless

In the island city alone, five plots had been reserved, he said. However, advocate Gayatri Singh, appearing for Homeless Collective, an NGO, alleged that in the last two years no decision had been taken by the state government or the municipal corporation on the issue, notwithstanding a Supreme Court order.

The bench said it would ask the state government to follow the directive of the apex court and ensure that the state follows the policy of earmarking plots of land for night shelters in the development plan. The matter has been adjourned to July 15.

During an earlier hearing, the High Court had observed that despite several orders of the court, there was no compliance and the government's attitude was insensitive.

The petitioner demands at least one night shelter for every one lakh population, as per the National Urban Livelihood Mission. Mumbai needs at least 227 shelters but has only nine, it says.

PTI 

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