Letter: Slum slur

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The Independent Online
"THE world's worst slum" is how Robin Buss described Calcutta ("Today's Television", Review, 24 March). Thirty per cent of Calcutta's population lives in slums, a figure comparable with other Third World cities.

The figure is 51 per cent in Bombay, which has the distinction of possessing the world's second largest slum, the largest one being in, no, not Calcutta, but Mexico City. More people live on the streets in New York than in Calcutta, and this is not thanks to that icon of the West, Mother Teresa, who has a total of 95 places in her home for the dying.

Whereas everyone knows about Calcutta's hand-pulled rickshaws, nobody is aware that it is the only Indian city with an underground system.

A Chatterjee

London E9