Negotiating Citizenship in F Block: A Jhuggi Jhopri Cluster in Delhi

Negotiating Citizenship in F Block: A Jhuggi Jhopri Cluster in Delhi

By Subhadra Banda, Varsha Bhaik, Bijendra Jha, Ben Mandelkern, and Shahana Sheikh
14 June 2014

Jhuggi jhopri clusters house some of the most vulnerable populations in Delhi. But even by these low standards, the residents of F Block, a JJC of several thousand in west Delhi, have remarkably poor access to the protections and services promised by the state. Residents live under constant threat of demolition, lacking even the most basic protections of political patronage that shield many vulnerable settlements. This report documents a population that does not approach the state as citizens with rights, nor even as clients of a patronage regime. Rather, residents of F Block approach the state as supplicants in a woefully unbalanced bargaining equation. This imbalance is defined by their extreme vulnerability and the constant threat of eviction, and is reproduced daily through surveillance, harassment, and continuous extractions by state agents, including elected representatives, local police, and DDA personnel.

 

A report of the Cities of Delhi project.