Nithya V. Raman & Priti Narayan – India’s Invisible Population October, 19, 2013. Since 2005, the Central government has given significant amounts of money to the States to improve conditions for the country’s urban poor, first under the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM) and more recently through the slow-moving Rajiv Awas Yojana (RAY). Unfortunately, very few studies have looked at how effective these programmes have been in achieving their objectives. Our research in Chennai suggests that money from the JNNURM did not effectively address the needs of the city’s most vulnerable residents.

How could this happen in a programme explicitly designed for this purpose, and in a State known for its generosity to the poor? This is because Chennai faces a problem common to many cities across India: it has two tiers of slums — those with official government recognition and those without, and the JNNURM did not push cities hard enough to directly intervene in slum areas without recognition.

Read more: