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Colourful murals bring a smile to a Delhi slum

January 13, 2020 08:58 IST

A New Delhi slum has been given a colourful makeover thanks to a street artist collective, drawing art lovers and selfie-snappers to a rundown area that they would never normally visit.

Raghubir Nagar, like other slums in the megacity of 20 million, is home to those on the margins of Indian society, families living cheek-by-jowl in ramshackle structures often lacking basic amenities.


However, a group of around 15-20 artists under the title of Delhi Street Art has refashioned the walls with huge murals depicting nature, religion and daily life -- drawing in thousands of passersby and selfie hunters.

Yogesh Saini, founder of Delhi Street Art, the group behind the makeover said that the artists worked hard to paint the walls with various themes that reflect nature and day-to-day life of inhabitants.

"We work for the beautification of public spaces. On the request of Member of Parliament (MP), Parvesh Verma who told that Jhuggi's are bit ignored we took the task of providing colour to the walls of houses here. A group of 15-20 artists worked forming different teams and the sponsorship is through a private source," said Saini.

"Most of the residents of the slum sell used clothes. Their life is indeed colourful like clothes. The women here wear different colourful dresses, jewellery etc. We have provided a different theme to each wall and house and the theme has only emerged after we consulted the inhabitants of the houses and took an idea from them," he said.

An 80-year-old woman named Didi was a bit excited to see a passerby taking a selfie.

"Whosoever comes wants to click pictures of our houses on their mobile," said Didi.

"I am living here for 40-45 years. Earlier there was no cleanliness but now it is like a heaven. People stop on the road to click photos," said Jayanti Lal.

"Earlier it was so dull now it looks beautiful," said Sumit, a class seventh student.

The residents hail the murals that have provided a new look to their 'basti' and have changed the way the people look at the slum.

-- With inputs from ANI