By Rina ChandranMUMBAI (
Thomson Reuters Foundation-
Four years ago, when Hasit Ganatra brainstormed the Indian slums, he didn't realize that what residents wanted most was good roofs: durable and leak-proof for storing water and dried peppers.
Ganatra studied engineering at the University of Southern California and worked with start-
Ups for solar and affordable housing.
Back to his hometown of Ahmedabad in Gujarat, he is looking for the perfect material for these roofs.
According to official figures, at least 65 million people live in slums in India.
Most people live in temporary shelters and sheds built with bricks, mud, plastic and tin, and the roofs are usually covered with tarpaulins.
"These houses may have brick walls, but when they get to the roof, they usually have no money and make money with metal or cement roofs," said Ganatra, founder of ReMaterials . ".
"These get very hot in the summer, noise and leakage in the rain, easy to corrosion, contain toxic substances, and have a high maintenance cost," he told Thomson Reuters Foundation . ".
Ganatra's team tried more than 15 materials before mixing them into their own materials with cardboard scrap and coconut fiber to add sand and waste plastic to the water.
The resulting ModRoof includes bright turquoise-
Waterproof, durable, lightweight, and quick blue panel for installation.
250 square feet (23. 2 sq mt)
The price of slum housing is about 50,000-60,000 rupees ($738-$885)
And can be paid with small loans
Financial institutions, Ganatra said.
The company has a rooftop prototype with solar panels and is also considering building modular walls for slum houses.
It installed about 60 roofs in Ahmedabad, where customers added water tanks, dried peppers and firewood with them, and even slept on them in the summer.
None of these activities are possible on corrugated metal roofs, Ganatra said.
"I'm happy to do whatever they want to do to make the roof more useful to them," he said . ".
"The House should be practical, affordable and beautiful for slum dwellers, just like Lego blocks and Ikea furniture.
"Human rights are the third largest human rights in India.
25 billion of the population lives in cities, and as thousands of migrants leave their villages and seek better prospects in urban areas, their numbers are growing every year.
Many migrants end up living in crowded slums, not even basic facilities, and have been afraid of deportation as Indian cities modernize.
The government of India has announced a plan to provide housing for all by 2022, which will create 20 million new housing units and repair existing slums.
However, few details are disclosed.
"We have so many resources, so many people, but we focus all our energy on building malls and apartments," said Pratham Kumar, founder of the non-billionaire.
Singapore's profit design studio focuses on housing for vulnerable groups.
"Housing is a fundamental human right, but more and more people can't afford it," Kumar said, who resigned from his job as a construction company and set up a billionaire.
Rescuers 'tents say he was transferred to the operation after reading news reports about the deaths of several children who rioted in the community of the northern Indian town of Muzaffarnagar on 2013.
Crowdfunding site Kickstarter raised about $105,000
Including actors Ashton Kutcher and hip-
Jump star Wayne-
Kumar and his team have developed a waterproof tent WeatherHyde that can even be built on the city sidewalk.
Bright-colored tents use a form of polyester resin-mylar, with a reflective layer that can capture body heat in the winter to keep warm, or reflect sun heat in the summer.
It can handle temperatures as low as 0 C.
The tent can be assembled by one person in less than 15 minutes without tools, enough for two adults and three children.
A tent costs about $200, and you can choose to rent $1 a night.
Kumar said he wants to reduce the cost to $100.
Pilot in New Delhi last winter with about 15 families, the product was also tested in Mumbai monsoon and Washington DCC.
"There's California," Kumar said.
He said that while the people who tested the tent were happy, city officials strongly opposed it.
"Because they are so smart, officials say they highlight the issue of the return and show them the bad side," Kumar said . ".
But we have to admit that the lack of affordable housing is a huge problem.
Our products may be the lifeline of the homeless in extreme weather, but they are only temporary shelters;
"The city must have these people live in permanent houses," he said . ". $1 = 67.
RS 7983 India)(
Rina Chandran @ rinachandran, edited by Paola Totaro, reports.
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