Sunday, February 27, 2005

The slums of Bombay

Robert Appleby took some fantastic pictures of Bombay's slums. I've just returned from Bombay, and believe me, the visual part is only a small fraction of the whole experience... and I didn't even go into a slum.

Housing does not get built because it is simply not a worthwhile proposition. There are obsolete rent control laws that keep some prime apartments and office buildings at less than $1 per month, an extremely inefficient bureaucracy, and the extremely short supply of property with clear title. A third of all land titles in India are under dispute, and that figure is probably a lot higher in Bombay.

Ironically, good intentions are mostly to blame for the tragedy that almost half of Bombay's people are homeless.

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