Articles by Anuj Behal

Anuj Behal is an independent journalist and urban researcher, focusing mostly on the intersections of gender, urban informality and housing rights, with a specific emphasis on urban exclusion at large.

"There isn't much garbage coming to the landfill now," says Rahim, 36, a waste picker working in the vicinity of Bhalswa. "Earlier, we would retrieve e-waste alone worth 500-700 rupees, but now it's dwindled to a mere 150-200 rupees." Saira Banu, 40, another waste picker, says "Whatever waste gets dumped these days, the trucks pick them up at night, leaving almost nothing for us. It's no longer as profitable as it used to be in the past years." Saira has been working for over two decades around Bhalswa. "I used to come here from Jahangirpuri to collect waste before marriage,…

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Paro, 26, a resident of Shraddhanand colony in Bhalswa, and her friends wait patiently for the water tanker, surrounded by buckets and barrels – a routine that repeats twice weekly. "We pause all our tasks to ensure we secure enough water. It's only available twice," Paro remarks. For years, Paro and her fellow colony dwellers have relied on water tankers. The local groundwater, tainted by the adjacent Bhalswa landfill in northwest Delhi since 1994, makes it a necessity. Meena, 36, standing alongside Paro, succinctly notes, "Khate (landfill) ki wajah se pani achha nahi hai." [The water quality is poor because…

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