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Yamuna Gently Weeps

No mother wants to nurture her child in a slum. Families do not live in a slum out of choice; it is a matter of survival.

Yumana Gently Weeps is the story of one of the biggest and oldest slums in Delhi and in India, called Yamuna Pushta. A slum that gave shelter to 1,50,000 people and which nurtured more than 40,000 homes. A world within a world existed in Yamuna Pushta.

Schools, medical and healthcare centres, self-help groups, shops, restaurants, creches, small businesses and various social organizations, worked closely with the community, bringing about immense positive change in the lives of the residents. This massive township was demolished in a few weeks.

40,000 homes were razed to the ground and more than 1,20,000 people were left to the mercy of the cruel streets. Just twenty percent of the families whose homes were demolished, were in the guise of resettlement, shoved forty kilometres away from the main city and civilization, onto a barren piece of land in Bawana, where there was no proper sanitation, no medical facility, pathetic water supply, no electricity, and worst of all, no scope of earning one's livelihood. All this and more in the middle of peak summer.

Thus begins the book by Ruzbeh N. Bharucha, son-in-law of Dr. Kiran Bedi, India's first woman policewoman who went on to found two foundations dedicated to prison reform, Nawajyoti and India Vision Foundation.

Kiran's great-grandfather was Sikh, immigrated from Pakistan to Amritsar and opened a pilgrimage inn, one of many now managed by Peshawaria Trust.

Both her maternal and paternal relatives are on the IVF board of directors, and some of them even have contributed to the industrial development of Dehli through the North India Development Authority (NOIDA).

Indeed, the Arora, Bharucha, and Peshawaria families have done much to care for the poor of Dehli.

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