Samvaad
SAMVAAD
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Samvaad


Samvaad is a series of discussion revolving around different dimensions of urbanism and communities. CURE believes in inter-disciplinary action towards creating sustainable communities. CURE's work encompasses different dimensions of community for which CURE draws specialized expertise from various sectors and knowledge pools. This is also reflected in the choice of speakers for Samvaad who throw light on different perspectives of development and its impact especially on the marginalized groups.



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Waste Management in Indian Cities

Dr. Mani’s talk on ‘Waste Management in Indian Cities’ explained in detail the different dimensions of waste and upcoming reforms in the sector. Management practices and measures to handle waste at individual and community level were also discussed in detail. Apart from this, the talk also covered details on specialized waste streams like biomedical, electronic, menstrual and slaughter house waste which are a growing concern in urban centres.

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Constitutionalism, public policy and public reasoning

Prof. Barik talk revolved around ‘Constitutionalism, public policy and public reasoning’ and highlighted incidents which are shaping the present socio-political climate. The talk discussed the issues of the marginalized communities which are suffering from problems of water pollution, sanitation and work and employment. The speaker threw light upon these public issues which is the core of democracy. He argued that at present there are real threats to democracy from the media and other organisations which were cited with examples during the session.

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Celebrating public spaces of India

As part of Mrs. Archana Gupta’s research at The Foundation of the Indian Cities, ‘Celebrating public spaces of India’ captures and explores the liveliness and the essence of these great public spaces and attempt to understand what makes these spaces great, and timeless. The research explored the concept of the tangible and intangible within cities. The talk essentially capture the element of ‘raunaq’ within each cities and celebrated its public spaces like maidans, ghats, and other cultural sites. Research trailer: Archana Gupta is an architect from the TVB School of Habitat Studies, New Delhi with a masters degree in Sustainable Design. She is actively involved in academics and has worked on many publications / research projects relating to studies of traditional and vernacular settlements in India. She is a co-founder and Director of the Foundation of The Indian Cities (TFIC).

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Understanding Biodiversity – Yamuna Biodiversity Park

Emerging as the capital’s most visited public place and prominent centre for learning and understanding the environment, the Yamuna Biodiverstity Park has become a home for biologically rich wetlands, grassland communities, a wide variety of fruit yielding species and an abundance of medicinal herbs. The park features two major zones – the visitor zone and the nature reserve zone. The guided walk highlighted the link between man, nature and urbanization. Wetland systems were discussed in detail with possibilities for creating man-made ecosystems to reviving ecologically degraded spaces in urban areas. Functioning of food web was another important learning from the walk. Creating plant communities rather than focusing on mono-cultures while planting was crucial to sustaining micro-ecosystems. The walk also discussed how destruction of wetlands and ecologically sensitive areas in cities can lead to slum like situations and its associated monetary loss.

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Bheries or Wetlands of East Kolkata

Growing up in East kolkata amidst Bheries, was one of the fond memories that Mr. Alok has. He shared how a set of shallow water channels in Kolkata built by Britishers, transformed in to a complex ecosystem that sustains enormous amount of economic activities for the local population and saves up crores of money every year by treating Kolkata’s waste water/sewage. Many of the contemporary public health engineering science have since developed several pond-based wastewater treatment technologies that may trace their origin to this type of a system.

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Gender in the context of Ancient India

Prof. Tyagi gave her insights on gender in the context of ancient India by drawing from ancient texts of Manu. The ancient text Manusmriti was discussed and debated in detail. The discussion also threw light upon how women have been portrayed by different authors, which clearly reflected a patriarchal autonomy over texts over the years. Different women characters like Draupadi, Durga, Sita, etc. from ancient scripts were also discussed and compared in the present socio-political set up.

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IRC Faecal Sludge Management Tool

IRC is an institute that works with governments and organizations on water and sanitation. IRC has developed an international tool for supporting municipal authorities in urban sanitation planning. For this purpose, IRC has come up with a Faecal Sludge Management Tool for urban sanitation. It analyses the sanitation chain and delivers a score card that helps to recognize the weakest link of the entire chain. This gives a direction for wise investment of the government funds. The presenters demonstrated the tool and its application in developing nations like India and Indonesia. The talk explored the sanitation service chain and discussed in detail the process of capture, containment, emptying, transport, treatment and disposal. The talk also discussed in detail the nuances of using this tool by picking up examples for Agra.

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Spatial (in) justices: Evidences from Delhi

Social justice focuses on the need for all people within a society to have fair and equal rights to human rights, opportunities and a fair allocation of resources. It is argued in the presentation that social processes have a strong spatial consequence. Injustices in the society in different forms have physical manifestations and can be seen on space. Drawing from writings of Henri Lefebvre, David Harvey, Edward Soja, Mustafa Dikec and Ashok Kumar, the talk explored the physical manifestations of spatial injustices in Delhi. Slums and squatter settlements, forced evictions, creation of socially segregated enclaves, restructuring of cities for mega events, etc. were discussed at length. Parameters to assess spatial injustices like illegality, historicity, social exclusion, misrecognition, entrapment, etc. were also discussed and deliberated.

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Agra Rainwater Harvesting and Community Processes

The talk revolved around the experience of building rainwater harvesting systems in Agra and challenges faced in the process. Another important element in successful implementation of any community development initiative is building ownership and consensus among community. The talk discovered the process in identifying and negotiating an appropriate place for rain water harvesting. One of the biggest challenges was faced in convincing the community for adopting rain water as an alternative to conventional sources of water in a city. There were also issues regarding property and ownership of space along with who will take initiative in taking the idea forward. Different stakeholders like the mukhiya, maulvi, mandir committee members, women and youth groups from the community were involved in the process. The Agra experience showcased how working with smaller groups and letting them take charge of the process helped in implementation of the rain water harvesting structure at Tedhi Bagia, Ambedkar Bagichi, Bilochpura and Madan Mohan Temple at Tajganj.

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Do we know our communities: Anand Parbat story

Anand Parbat area in west-central Delhi has a complex history of jurisprudence. The community along with the factories has emerged amidst this confusing legal tussle between the State and a private body. The talk commenced with definition of space and its linkage with activities and the people owning that space. Various elements of the community were explored in terms of topography, demography and resource allocation. Access to water because of the topography and low sex-ratio in the area were key points of discussion about the area. An innovate tool called ‘sociogram’ as a tool was performed in the community to identify the various local leaders in the community and involving community leaders to take charge of community activities.

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Do we know our communities: Dharampura Camp story

Dharampura Camp is low income settlement situated along a railway line in East Delhi and came up during the 70s. The talk revolved around the complex social fabric in the area and brought out the various socio-cultural elements in the community. The talk also brought to light the spatial segregation observed in the community upon religious and caste lines and how it was reflected in the resources owned by the various groups. It was observed that the valmiki community in the camp had cleaner spaces and more resources than other community. The talk also explored the various activities and occupations people were engaged in. The talk concluded with the various points for working in such a complex and challenging community fabric.

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Gender Roles in Sanitation

CURE developed a questionnaire for gender study at Savda Ghevra, Delhi to understand the obstacles or triggers in investing in water and sanitation infrastructure in low income communities. Ms. Suneeta Dhar was invited to give her critical inputs on the questionnaire and also share her experiences of working with women groups over the years. The speaker interpreted and commented on various ideological and epistemological beliefs associated with women. Her critical inputs on the framework and methodology of the study helped in fine tuning the research.

Samvaad 12

Waste Management in Indian Cities.

Speaker: Dr. Shyamala Mani, Professor, National Institute of Urban Affairs, New Delhi.

Samvaad 11

Constitutionalism, public policy and public reasoning.

Speaker: Prof. (Dr.) Radhakanta Barik,Senior Fellow,Indian Council of Social Science Research and Retd. Professor, Indian Institute of Public Administration, New Delhi.

Samvaad 10

Celebrating public spaces of India.

Speaker: Mrs. Archana Gupta, Architect and Director, The Foundation of The Indian Cities (TFIC).

Samvaad 9

Understanding Biodiversity - Yamuna Biodiversity Park

Speaker: Dr. Faiyaz, Mr. Faisal, Mr. Sameer and Mr. Pranjal ( our amazing guide for the walk ).

Samvaad 8

Bheries or Wetlands of East Kolkata

Speaker: Mr. Alok Dasgupta, Team Leader, Technical Cell, CURE Growing up in East kolkata amidst Bheries, was one of the fond memories that Mr. Alok has.

Samvaad 7

Gender in the context of Ancient India

Speaker: Prof. Jaya Tyagi, Department of History, University of Delhi & Director, Women's Studies and Development Centre, University of Delhi Prof.

Samvaad 6

IRC Faecal Sludge Management Tool

Speakers: Ms. Ingeborg Krukkert, Sanitation and Hygiene Specialist, Lead Asia Program, IRC, Ms. Ruchika Shiva, Country Coordinator, IRC and Mohd. Shehfar, Technical Expert, Water and Sanitation, India Country Program, IRC.

Samvaad 5

Spatial (in) justices: Evidences from Delhi.

Speaker: Mr. Aditya Ajith, Urban Planner, CURE.

Samvaad 4

Agra Rainwater Harvesting and Community Processes

Speaker: Mr. Siddharth Pandey, Social Sector Specialist and Program Manager, CURE.

Samvaad 3

Do we know our communities: Anand Parbat story

Speaker: Mr. Prakhar Nigam, Project Co-ordinator, CURE.

Samvaad 2

Do we know our communities: Dharampura Camp story.

Speaker: Ms. Megha Gupta, Project Coordinator, CURE Dharampura Camp.

Samvaad 1

Gender Roles in Sanitation.

Speaker: Ms. Suneeta Dhar, Advisor, JAGORI CURE developed a questionnaire for gender study at Savda Ghevra, Delhi.