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Formal recognition of land rights allows for cleaner cities and better living conditions for slum dwellers. Examine.

Topic: Urbanization, their problems and their remedies.

1. Formal recognition of land rights allows for cleaner cities and better living conditions for slum dwellers. Examine. (250 Words)

Indian Express 

Why this question:

Slums are an omnipresent reality for most of the major cities of India and various efforts have been made by the government to address the issue. In this context it is essential to understand the relationship of India’s slums with its political and economic structure and discuss why the slum development and relocation strategies have not borne the results.

However, Odisha’s slum rehabilitation project is transforming lives. The World Habitat Mission recognised the state government’s Jaga Mission that used drones to survey slums. It is the world’s largest slum land title project. It involves the government surveying and awarding slum dwellers a legal land title.

Key demand of the question:

One must discuss the importance of how the formal recognition of land rights to the slum dwellers can help in improving the living conditions of slum and in turn lead to sustainable urbanization.


Examine – When asked to ‘Examine’, we have to look into the topic (content words) in detail, inspect it, investigate it and establish the key facts and issues related to the topic in question. While doing so we should explain why these facts and issues are important and their implications.

Structure of the answer:


write a few introductory lines about the growth of urbanization in India and the problems this has led to.


Discuss the importance of slums from the point of workforce

  • One cannot just remove them. (If we do that) there will be no one (left) to work as domestic staff or in garbage disposal and road constructions — their most common occupations that also happen to be the lifeline of the city. Slums are the pillars of the urban (city) economy. Especially in India, the formal economy runs on the engine of the informal economy.

Discuss about the various challenges faced by the slum dwellers due to lack of recognition of land title and reasons why most slum development strategies have failed in India.

  • g. There are many hurdles, both major and minor. The lack of adequate data and land titles in slums meant expensive, time-consuming delays were common. Failure to take slum dweller representatives on board meant that the informal economic networks underlying the slum economy would be disrupted by the redevelopment. So would the community networks that fill the gaps left by missing social safety nets. Lack of common standards meant that the housing built for slum dwellers was often of execrable quality. As for the problem of slum dwellers selling or leasing the houses and returning to their previous housing, poor quality, unaffordable maintenance costs and disrupted networks often had a role to play here etc.

Using the Odisha’s Jaga mission as an example, substantiate as to how the formal recognition of land title can lead to betterment of living conditions.

What other measures needed to tackle it?

E.g.: After LRC distribution, the focus must shift to individual and public toilets, household tap water supply, LED street lighting, and skill improvement etc.


Conclude with way forward.