Congress' declaration on Old City aims to eradicate poverty, ill health

Congress party has decided to collaborate with NGO's and social activists to brainstorm sustainable solutions for Old City.

By KANIZA GARARI  Published on  14 Aug 2023 1:03 PM GMT
Congress declaration on Old City aims to eradicate poverty, ill health

Hyderabad: The Congress party on Monday said that it is preparing a charter to identify the challenges faced by the residents of the Old City of Hyderabad.

Calling it the ‘Old City of Hyderabad Declaration’, the party said that it has decided to collaborate with NGOs and social activists to brainstorm sustainable solutions for Old City. The findings from this session will be shared with the state leadership and included in the state election manifesto, it said.

Addressing a press meeting, Hyderabad district committee President Sameer Waliullah, said that, “We have conducted surveys have helped understand the living standards and challenges faced by the people in the Old City.”

“Just like how the party has addressed the issues of farmers, youth and women, the party will now make a similar concentrated effort for the development of the Old City,” he added.

Survey in Hyderabad’s Old City

Explaining the data gathered in the various surveys done by the party, Sameer Waliullah said, “The major challenge in the Old City of Hyderabad continues to be poverty. The survey has shown that 60 per cent of the Old City’s 58 lakh population live in slums. Of these, 74 per cent are tenants and only 26 per cent have their own homes. In this, 38 per cent do not have white ration cards, and 37 per cent of the households have women as the sole income generators.”

He said that the Old City faced many challenges in the educational, health and financial sectors. The party said that almost 15 per cent of children drop out of school between Class 5 and Class 10. He said that Hyderabad accounts for 33 per cent of all chronic diseases in the state, but the Old City alone reports over 50 per cent of these cases.

“Financial problems also plague the region, with 65 per cent of families struggling with debt and high-interest rates. They borrow money from private lenders to pay for basic necessities like food and medicine. The interest rates charged by these lenders range from 10 to 21 per cent,” he said.

‘High cases of addiction’

Sameer Waliullah said that the BRS government has promoted alcoholism by granting permission for wine shops indiscriminately. “Alcoholism is a major problem and a significant factor in creating marital discord,” he said.

"The BRS government has neglected the Old City’s development over the past nine years. The Congress party will offer pragmatic solutions that will not just serve as superficial promises but have the potential to fundamentally transform the face of the Old City in the next five years,” he said.

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