Roof for poor or cash cow of the rich?
Dec 07, 2012
Source : The Times of India
RANCHI: The Ran Baseras or night shelters in the city were built by Ranchi Municipal Corporation (RMC) to provide a place for the poor such as rickshaw pullers, street vendors, among others to spend their nights. As many as 11 night shelters have been constructed by Ranchi Municipal Corporation, of which eight are permanent and three temporary.

However, none of them are serving the purpose that they were meant to. Small businessmen have opened hotels on the first floor of the night shelter at Ratu Road, while the ground floor is occupied by various shops such as that of photocopying and mobile recharge. Similar is the condition of the night shelter in Doranda.

The one near Jaipal Singh Stadium has been shut for days now. Many other night shelters are suffering the same fate.

For the poor, spending nights on roadside during the summer season is not much of a problem. But spending the nights on the roadside during winters is hard.

Kamalesh Kumar, a rickshaw puller said, "In summers, we have no problem spending the nights on the roadside. In fact, even during the rainy season, I can find shelter under the shade of a tree. But in winters, it is nearly impossible to sleep in the open as temperature here is so low that one could freeze to death. Ran Basera was made for people like us to spend nights here, but they are being used by the rich to increase their income whereas oor like us have nowhere to go."

Officials of RMC, however, claim that Ran Baseras of the city are fully functional. Deepankar Panda, CEO of RMC, said, "People are spending nights at Ran Baseras and all of them are managed properly. I do not have knowledge about Ran Baseras being occupied by hoteliers and shopkeepers, but I will definitely enquire into the matter."

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