SCI-FI initiative at CPR signs MoU with Government of Punjab

2 October 2020

Press Release: The SCI-FI initiative at CPR announces the signing of Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Department of Local Government, Government of Punjab to support the Implementation of The Punjab Slum Dwellers (Proprietary Rights) Act, 2020

Delhi, Friday, 2 October 2020: The Centre for Policy Research, New Delhi under its initiative ‘Scaling City Institutions for India: Land Planning and Housing (SCI-FI: LPH)’ is pleased to announce the signing of an MOU on October 2, 2020, with the Department of Local Government, Government of Punjab.

In April 2020, Government of Punjab enacted a milestone legislation for sustainable growth of basic civic services in slum areas in urban towns and cities of Punjab ensuring the security of tenure through conferring proprietary rights to the slum dwellers - the Punjab Slum Dwellers (Proprietary Rights) Act (PSDA), 2020.

Under the PSDA 2020, each eligible slum household will receive a Certificate of Proprietary Rights, according them land rights. All slums will also have access to basic civic services like clean drinking water, sanitation and a clean urban environment. The Proprietary rights received by the slum dwellers will entitle them for the settlement of the land occupied, on as-is-where-is basis, free of cost, for Economically Weaker Section (EWS) category. The certificate of Proprietary Rights will be acceptable as proof of residence thereby empowering the slum dwellers.

The Scaling City Institutions for India initiative at the Centre for Policy Research, as a knowledge partner, will support government of Punjab’s efforts towards conferring the urban poor with secure tenure and access to upgraded basic civic services, making cities and towns in Punjab “slum-free”.

During the signing, Hon’ble Chief Minister of Punjab, Captain Amarinder Singh said, “The Government of Punjab has always strived to safeguard the rights and improve the quality of life of the poor and the marginalised people in the state. Recognising the crucial role played by slum dwellers in building and sustaining our cities, the Government of Punjab decided to empower them by enacting milestone legislation - the Punjab Slum Dwellers (Proprietary Rights) Act, 2020. The act shall transform the slums into vibrant and liveable habitats and lay the foundations of a just, humane and inclusive urban development paradigm. I hope this upgradation initiative will enhance the resilience of the slum dwellers by improving their lives and livelihoods. I wish to extend my deep appreciation to the Department of Local Government, All-District Collectors, Urban Local Bodies and the organisations those who have partnered with the state in this noble mission.”

Speaking on the partnership, Administrative Secretary, Department of Local Government, Government of Punjab, Shri Ajoy Kumar Sinha, said, “The Government enacted the PDSA 2020 with the noble and ambitious aim of transforming slums into improved habitats through a combination of land rights and a comprehensive slum improvement process. This goal shall be achieved through a comprehensive slum improvement and upgradation process to provide the slum settlements with necessary physical infrastructure and amenities and bringing the slums at par with the rest of the city. I am confident that such participatory efforts will pave the way for the physical, sociological, economic and political transformation of the slum areas in the state.”

Yamini Aiyar, President and Chief Executive, Centre for Research said “We at CPR have been working the Government of Punjab since sometime now  and it is a privilege to be associated with them again in advancing this noble objective. This is an important partnership which will advance mainstreaming of slums with the rest of the city developing on the foundation of an inclusive city development paradigm.” 

On the collaboration, Shubhagato Dasgupta, Senior Fellow, CPR and SCI-FI Programme Director said “The partnership demonstrates the persistent efforts of the Government of Punjab to bring about sustainable development and inclusive growth across the state, ensuring that slum households in the state are included as rightful members of urban society. This timely intervention responds to the current state and national imperatives and provides a learning opportunity to inform state- and nation-wide slum upgradation efforts. We are grateful to the state of Punjab for providing the opportunity for this collaboration.”

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