The United Nation estimates that nearly a billion people are living in slums and calls the slums their home. In some cities around 80% of the population still lives in a slum. In the coming years, the numbers of slum dwellers worldwide are only going to increase and increase. So my question here is, why do so many people are still living in Slums?? And where are the largest slums in the world??
Well first of all, what is a slum??
Well the UN defines slum as having these five characteristics. Which are mentioned below:
- They usually lack permanent housing infrastructure,
- They don’t have Sufficient space for inhabitants,
- They don’t have Access to clean water at all,
- They don’t have Appropriate sanitation system and
- They don’t have any Personal safety.
Many slums are usually located on the outskirts of towns and cities, and are poorly constructed, without any housing authority regulations. People live in urban slums in order to get access to more work opportunities and more wages. However the work load and wages they get are often not enough to fully extricate them from the cycle of poverty. A majority of slum dwellers live on mere dollars per day.
So my questions is where are the world’s biggest slums?
Well first of all they reside in the developing nations in Asia, Africa and Latin America. The UN reports that the most deprived slum dwellers are the slums in the Sub Sahara Africa. According to the 2013 analysis by the Borgen project.
Most Populous Slums
The top five most populous slums are found in the countries of South Africa, Kenya, India, Pakistan and Mexico. They are:
- Khayeltisha, Cape Town, South Africa
- Kibera, Nairobi, Kenya
- Dharavi, Mumbai, India
- Orangi Town, Karachi, Pakistan
- Neza-Chalco-Itza, Mexico City, Mexico
South Africa biggest slum is home to around 400 thousand people, while Mexico biggest slums is said to contain 4 million residents. One of India’s largest slum in Mumbai, The Dharavi, contains up to a million people and served as the backdrop for the Oscar winning film, “The Slumdog Millionaire”. In what may be the most populous slum in the world, near the Mexico City, residents live near a massive landfill and are exposed to one of the highest crime rates in the world.
Accurate statistics are hard to come by for many slums, but experts believe that slum areas are some of the fastest growing human habitats worldwide. Despite the UN’s and many nations best efforts, the growth of slums continue to outpace the social and structural unban improvements.
Still the UN continues to push for increased government oversight in slums, in the hopes that residents will be able to overcome their living standards, and eventually prosper elsewhere.
But can they? I have seen slums but according to me it will take more than these steps to eradicate slums as people are slowly moving towards capitalism and more wealth for themselves. So here my final says is that the rich people will get richer and the poor people will get poorer.