Tenure Security and Urban Social Protection in India

Published on 1 January 2011

This paper is contextualised against India’s forthcoming national urban housing programme, the Rajiv Awaas Yojana (RAY), the key component of which is to extend property rights to slum dwellers. The entire programme is intended to extend property rights, and through that the property market, to slum dwellers so that they can navigate the property and finance markets, along the lines of De Soto.

This paper argues that policies to improve de facto tenure security in the slums in urban India should be the starting point of any housing programme addressing the development of existing slums. The research hypothesis is: tenure security has a positive relationship with living conditions, human development, economic status and access to entitlements. In other words, the higher the levels of tenure security, the higher the living conditions, human development achievements, economic status and access to entitlements.

The paper discusses the concepts of tenure security, the importance of tenure security in social protection and India’s urban housing policy. Applying the understanding that tenure security is a continuum of rights, the paper constructs different levels of tenure security in the slums from the field surveys, conducted in Ahmedabad and Surat, cities in the state of Gujarat. The relationship of tenure security with outcomes, as mentioned above, have been explored through statistical data, gathered through household surveys in the slums in the two cities mentioned. The paper finally has recommendations for the upcoming shelter programme in India.

Report summary: CSP Research Report Summary 05 (3.4Mb pdf)

Related publication: Social Protection in Asia: Research findings and policy lessons (4.5Mb pdf)

Publication details

published by
Mahadevia, D.
CSP Research Report, issue 5


About this publication

Programmes and centres
Centre for Social Protection

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