NEW DELHI: India has 240 million households living in informal urban settlements, including slums — 40 per cent higher than 140 million slum households estimated by Census of India 2011 data, says an independent study by research firm Indicus Analytics and civil society organisation PRIA.
The study on the ‘economic contribution of urban poor in India’ has also found that people living as informal settlement dwellers contribute about more than 7.5 per cent to the country’s urban GDP.
According to the study, a large proportion of urban poor workforce, which consists of domestic help, vendors and hawkers, construction workers, rag-pickers and rickshaw pullers dwell in informal settlements, slums and resettlement colonies.
“The estimate of slums takes into account certain criteria set by Census for settlement to be featured as slums.
However, a large chunk of households are left out who are living in similar or poorer dwelling conditions compared to those of slums and therefore our baseline number is 40 per cent higher than that estimated by Census,” Laveesh Bhandari, director, Indicus Analytics said.
The study further noted that at all India level, 36 per cent of slum households do not have basic facilities of electricity, tap water and sanitation within the house premises.
However, these basic amenities were better available in states Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh, Punjab, Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh as comparison to Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, Bihar and Jharkhand.
The study was conducted on the basis of a primary survey of 50 top cities in India. The survey captured various socio-economic-demographic dimensions of urban informal settlements dwellers in these cities. More than 5000 households and 24,445 individuals were covered in the survey.
The focus of the study was to get information about income-expenditure, employment, nature of job, education, living conditions and the similar ones to understand the economic component of their life along with standard of living.