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'The Ultimate User-Generated City'

A look inside the real slum featured in the movie "Slumdog Millionaire". The film won 8 Oscars including Best Picture.

"Its depiction as a slum does little justice to the reality of Dharavi. Well over a million 'eyes on the street,' to use Jane Jacobs's phrase, keep Dharavi perhaps safer than most American cities.""

"People have learned to respond in creative ways to the indifference of the state -- including having set up a highly functional recycling industry that serves the whole city."

"Dharavi is all about such resourcefulness. Over 60 years ago, it started off as a small village in the marshlands and grew, with no government support, to become a million-dollar economic miracle providing food to Mumbai and exporting crafts and manufactured goods to places as far away as Sweden."

"No master plan, urban design, zoning ordinance, construction law or expert knowledge can claim any stake in the prosperity of Dharavi."

Full Story: Taking the Slum Out of ‘Slumdog’



Another view

While Slumdog Millionnaire highlights the reality of dharavi, the government of Mumbai is getting ready to select a developer to bulldoze the entire place for high rise towers in the form of private development. The move is controversial to say the least.

In this regard there was another proposal presented by HOK. See this link for further details.

The Ultimate User-Generated City

J. David Stein
I suggest that there is a serious need to correct the mistaken impression of a nearly crime free Dharavi - as was even shown in "Slumdog" most of the poor are controlled by a terrible nexus of criminal gangs and police who often work in tandem to generate huge revenues through extortion, prostitution, gambling, organized theft, etc. Yes, the slums make a lot of money, but far less stays with the residents than this article would have us believe. There is a corrective balance needed: Check out Suketu Mehta's "Maximum City" or Mike Davis's "Planet of Slums".

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