THE CONDO-ISATION OF NEW DELHI'S MIDDLE CLASS NEIGHBOURHOODS
10th June 2015, New Delhi, India. A house guard sleeps in his cabin in Defence Colony, New Delhi, India on the 10th June 2015
Over the past two decades, Defence Colony (created in the aftermath of the 1947 Partition. Newly-independent India allotted land to resettle serving Indian military officers whose family homes lay across the new border in Muslim-majority Pakistan) – with its central location just 8km from Connaught Place – has undergone dramatic changes. Nearly 60 per cent of the original bungalows have been pulled down, replaced by modern three or four-story condominiums. The transformation of Defence Colony is echoed in many middle-class neighbourhoods across the Indian capital, where individual property owners and the construction industry are profiting from the increased housing demand. As Delhi’s building code has changed to permit larger, multi-unit buildings on what were once considered single-family plots, many old neighbourhoods are essentially being torn down and rebuilt. Defence Colony’s central location – and the huge profits to be made – have propelled that process faster than elsewhere.
PHOTOGRAPH BY AND COPYRIGHT OF SIMON DE TREY-WHITE
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