Namma Mane | Our Home: Pattanduru Agrahara

    PA 1

    Pattanduru Agrahara is an undeclared settlement located in northeastern Bangalore.This settlement became known as Pattanduru Agrahara due to its close proximity to a notified settlement by the same name. Pattanduru Agrahara is located near to Nalluralli lake, resulting in the lush vegetation in the area.

    Originally, the area was settled by 20 to 25 migrant families in 2008. These families hailed largely from two different states, Andhra Pradesh and Maharashtra. All of the families migrated for economic opportunity, leaving their native villages and cities looking for work. After reaching Pattanduru Agrahara, they worked at a nearby construction site. They lived on land owned by the owner of the construction site, paying Rs. 200 per month to live there.

    After the construction of the original site was completed, the families were given three months to leave the area, as the builder wanted to develop the land on which the families were residing. The families moved to a plot of land across the street from their original location, at which time more families joined. There are approximately 200 families living in Pattanduru Agrahara currently.

    PA 2Depending on the size of the hut, the residents of Pattanduru Agrahara pay anywhere from Rs. 600 to Rs. 1200 for the land on which they reside. 70% of the residents of the area are Christian, 20% are Muslim, and 10% are Hindu. A majority of the people speak Telugu. The residents of Pattanduru Agrahara do not possess any identification, such as a Voter ID card, Aadhar Card, or Ration Card, due to the fact that they are recent migrants to Bangalore.

    PA 3The residents of Pattanduru Agrahara originally settled where the tall grey building stands. One year ago, they were forced off of that land by the private owner of the property, who wanted to develop apartment buildings on that land. To avoid conflict, the residents moved to a clearing across the street, where they now live. Some of the residents of Pattanduru Agrahara worked on the construction of this building and other nearby construction projects. Men earn Rs. 500-600 per day and women earn Rs. 250-300 per day. Others work in the Vydehi Hospital (the tall white building in the far left corner).

    PA 4There is a severe lack of services in Pattanduru Agrahara. The landlord has provided one bore well for the entire area, leading to lack of adequate access to water for the residents of the area. The government (central, state, or municipal) provides no basic facilities. While the main roads near the settlement are paved, there are in disrepair, with many potholes and grooves making them difficult to use. There is also an small Hindu temple near the main road, but it has been destroyed due to improper maintenance; sewage water flows into the clearing set aside for the temple.

    PA 5

    From left: Subaan,10;Behind subaan, Mrs.Shaahinama, 55(relative of Saabirama); Mrs. Saabirama, 27
    Mrs. Saabirama, 27, has been living in Pattanduru Agrahara for the past 12 years with her family. She works at a nearby garden, earning approximately Rs. 200 per day. Her husband, Mr. Kasim, 40, works in a nearby construction buildings, earning up to Rs. 350 per day. They have 2 sons, Subaan, 10, and Dasthagiri, 9.

    PA 6Subaan and Dasthagiri  were both send to a hostel, but they ran away because they disliked the environment, coming back to live with their parents. However, their parents hope that they will ultimately get an education; their mother said, “My dream is to provide a good education to both of my sons. If they graduate, they will get good jobs and good positions in society.”

    PA 7Most people in Pattanduru Agrahara use firewood to prepare meals. Only very few have gasoline tankers, and some have access to solar powered stoves, although firewood remains the most prominent source of heating for food in the settlement.

    PA 8Mr. Yesu, 45, originally from Mantralaya, lives with his family in Pattanduru Agrahara. He is involved in the production of phenyl, a common cleaning agent. Sold in old plastic water bottles, the process of production neither safe nor legal. However, the area is well known for its involvement in this trade. A can of phenyl can sell for for Rs. 1200 to Rs. 1500.

    PA 9 Latha, Mr. Yesu’s daughter, sells phenyl in this basket, which holds a large number of phenyl bottles. She sells phenyl to nearby settlements, while Mr. Yesu uses a bicycle to sell the phenyl to other settlements.

    PA 10From left: Mrs. Lakshmamma, 40; Mr.Yeriswamy, 50
    Mr. Yeriswamy, 50, has been living  in the settlement for the past 12 years with his family. He works in the nearby Vydehi Hospital as a housekeeper, earning Rs. 7000 per month. Mrs. Lakshmamma, 40, also works in Vydehi Hospital as a housekeeper, earns Rs. 6000 per month to help support her family. They have 2 sons. Raghavendra, 25, studied till the 10th grade, works as a salesman in a local mobile shop, earning Rs. 8000 per month. His wife, Mrs.Suvarna, 18, works as a Kindergarten teacher in the Vydehi School, earning Rs. 7000 per month. Their other son, Shivananda, 22, also studied till the 10th grade, and is now working as a night security guard in a private company, where he earns Rs. 8000 per month to help his family. They pay rent amount of Rs.700 per month. Mr. Yemiswamy’s family is originally Maharashtra.

    PA 11Due to her family’s finances, Ms. Lakshmamma is works despite significant stress and uncomfortability in Bangalore. She believes that there is little security in this settlement, and wants to go back to Maharashtra, where she is originally from. She has many more relatives there, but the money is much better in Bangalore, and therefore, she is willing to live here for a few more years.

    PA 12The inner roads of Pattanduru Agrahara are made of dirt, whilst the houses are constructed from thin wooden poles and waterproof tarps. The floors of these homes are usually comprised of broken tile fit together. Such homes are easily movable, as are their possessions, because they are recent migrants, and expect to be asked to relocate sometime in the future.

    PA 13There is little community bonding in Pattanduru Agrahara, and as such, there are no neighborhood organizations in the community. The lack of bonding is likely due to the vast variety of districts from which they hail, and also because they residents of the area are very afraid of the landowners, and are thus averse to forming community associations.

    PA 14Most children in this settlement are not sent to school. After an incident in which one child from Pattanduru Agrahara tragically died at a government school, parents of children here are afraid to provide their children with formal education. While largely illiterate, the children in Pattanduru Agrahara are resourceful, and find joy in the small things in life.