The Delhi Government has announced it will begin replacing all plastic tent night shelters with portable cabins within the next 72-hours, in a bid to protect the homeless from increasingly cold weather.
Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has instructed Sub-Divisional Magistrates to prepare a list of areas where homeless people are sleeping out in the open and the cabins are needed by 4 January.
Mr Kejiriwal told a press conference on Wednesday: “During night-time inspections by our ministers Manish Sisodia and Rakhi Birla and Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) Sanjay Singh, it came to our knowledge that many people are sleeping under flyovers and other such places and not willing to move to night shelters. The government has decided to provide portable cabin-based shelter to them on the spot.
”The Delhi Government runs several night shelters made of tents. So I have ordered that all such night shelters be converted into portable cabins in the next 3-4 days.”
Mr Kejriwal said AAP volunteers, along with members of NGO Ashray Adhikar Abhiyan, will now begin conducting a survey to determine where the portable cabins are required. He said the Government is also contacting members of the Legislative Assembly (MLA) for assistance in making sure night shelters have better facilities to support the homeless.
“We are writing to MLAs saying their help is also needed in this matter and sending them a list of night shelters in their respective areas. We are appealing them to visit night shelters,” he said.
The move comes after the Government also announced 45 new night shelters would be built in Delhi to help families displaced by the 175 hutments demolished in East Delhi's Mansarovar Park on Friday, which left 900 people homeless.