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Urban homeless may be highest in South B’luru’

According to the estimates shared by Dream India Network and Impact India Consortium, the South zone in the city has the highest number of urban homeless.

The two organisations in association with the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) are conducting the survey to identify homeless people in the city. The survey in the South zone, which began on Tuesday, is suggesting an estimate close to 2,200 homeless people in the zone so far.

Surprisingly, the South zone is known to be one of the well-developed localities in the city, that includes Jayanagar, Basavanagudi and JP Nagar. The volunteers will carry out the survey for three days in the zone.

In just three days, the survey has revealed 1,526 urban homeless in the West zone comprising Malleshwaram, Vijayanagar, Krantiveera Sangolli Rayanna Railway Station and so on.

However, there are only six shelter homes set up by the BBMP for the homeless in the city. According to TD Sampath, convenor, Impact India Consortium, for every 100,000 people, there has to be at least a shelter home as per the guidelines set by the Supreme Court. “The civic body has only six shelter homes in place at the moment. We need at least a 100 more in the city,” said Sampath. During the survey, the volunteers record details such as name, place, family
information among others.

Once the volunteers identify the homeless in a zone, they will take necessary measures to provide rehabilitation too. “Most people are suffering from health problems, and it is important for us to rehabilitate them and provide nutritious
food,” said Sampath. The volunteers will hold the survey in all the 198 wards of the city.

Meanwhile, Randeep D, additional commissioner, administration, BBMP, admitted that the civic body has not focused on the urban homeless so far. “We have never given priority to the homeless. If a person has been sleeping out in
the open even in this chilly weather, it means he or she must have undergone difficult times. It is time that we took necessary action,” said Randeep.

He also said that about 20 to 25 shelter homes will be built, and he has asked joint commissioners across all wards to identify suitable locations. “We are working out on various models — be it land acquisition, building the shelters, or
even seeking help of NGOs that have space so that we can rent and make space available for the homeless,” he said.

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