ICAS:MP funded study on Urban poor in Delhi in collaboration with Lokniti- CSDS

An ICAS:MP-funded Lokniti-CSDS study on slums in Delhi examines whether the ‘Delhi model of governance’ also applies to those residing in slums and taps into experiences of slum dwellers about the quality of basic amenities. Our thematic module 3 (Critiques and renewals of Democracy) member and former co-director, Professor Sanjay Kumar conducted the study. The study was conducted among people living in slums spread across 11 districts in Delhi. This survey of over 1,000 people across 55 slums in the national capital sheds light on the conditions they live in, the problems they face every day and who they trust to solve them. Key highlights of the study published in The Indian Express are:
  1. Among urban poor, vaccine hesitancy low, opinion of health facilities has improved: Despite the pandemic, the general opinion of the urban poor has been positive about public health sector as compared to before.
  2. For urban poor, access to electricity improves, work needed on safai-paani : The overall picture on basic amenities show that though there is significant satisfaction with provision of electricity, a large chunk does not have access to proper drinking water, sanitation and cleanliness, forcing them to live in substandard conditions.
  3. 7 in 10 have availed of PDS scheme; lack of documents occasional hurdle: People living in Delhi slums get benefit of government schemes, especially free ration or ration at subsidised cost. During covid, the urban poor got help from the government. However, lack of documentation is a hurdle.
  4. Among Delhi’s urban poor, unemployment biggest crisis, 76% were out of jobs during pandemic: Three-fourth of the respondents reported having to give up their jobs, nearly one-fourth had to leave their jobs to start with some other work and three-fifths reported that they had to borrow money to sustain themselves.
  5. Urban poor feel major crimes have dipped, but trust in police remains low: This study assesses how people living in Delhi’s slums perceive the current law and order situation in the capital and to what extent they trust the police and assess the work done by them.
  6. Online schooling hit urban poor the hardest, 1 in 5 homes say kids missed a year: Close to two in ten households having children under the age of 18 years reported that children had to completely stop their studies in the last one to two years because of not having access to a mobile or a laptop.
Another study across 55 slums of Delhi was conducted on ‘How the pandemic affected Delhi’s poor?’ Some key findings of the survey was published in The Hindu- Datapoint. 
  1. 75 per cent of the respondents had to give up their jobs during the pandemic.
  2. 60 per cent had to borrow money for a living.
  3. Most got free food and grains from the government, but very few received financial help or job-related assistance.
  4. The lack of jobs is the primary concern of the respondents.

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