Dear Builderji,

A big pranaam to you. I’m Krishna Apartments and I’m 6 years old. I am 6 floors in height. 18 apartments in all. No swimming pool. No squash courts. No annexe for parties and celebrations. No gym. Just a small, simple and peaceful building society with all apartments occupied and a view of the large open ground. My occupants are good, law-abiding citizens who bought my flats with their hard-earned money. They enjoyed 5 years of peaceful co-existence. But that’s all in the past.

Now, i have a new neighbour. Tall, grand, fancy with two storeys of car parking, two squash courts, an entertainment centre, a well equipped gym, a beautiful foyer with security cams and finger recognition software for members. They even have a cafeteria. Do i sound envious? Maybe a little but more than envious I’m feeling stifled, claustrophobic and unhappy. My inhabitants have all been taken by surprise by your 18 floor monstrosity because today 6 of the 18 families have no sunlight in their homes. Their windows look out at the building wall of your new Hamilton Parade, whatever that means!

I am now surviving under a big, black cloud. Everyone who made a home in me is today looking to abandon me. The family living in flat 102 made a distress sale and left in a hurry because their flat had become too dingy and damp and their daughter’s asthma resurfaced.

I’m writing to you to ask ‚Ķ what did you think when you spotted this plot of land and the government gave you permission to go ahead with your mammoth project? Did you even notice this small 6 storey building that you were about to eclipse with your grand design? Did you stop to consider the families that live here? What this would mean to them or to their daily existence? Who do these people turn to when their homes have just becomes dark, airless boxes? There is no insurance claim available because this cannot be termed a natural disaster or a force majeure. Who do they appeal to? Where do they go? What is their future? Why does no one give a crap?

Who will help?

sincerely,
Krishna Apartments,
crumbling in spirit and yet hoping for a miracle

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