Parsis: The Zoroastrians of India Pakistan and The World

Parsis reduced to tears for homes

As if the 25-year wait for a house was not enough, allegations that she and many like her lied to get a house became too much for a 55-year-old Parsi woman at the charity commissioner’s office on Wednesday, and she broke down.

She, along with at least 30 other people from the community, have consistently been attending all hearings at the charity commissioner’s office, to find out if they will finally be allotted homes under the Bombay Parsi Punchayet’s (BPP) homes-for-the-needy scheme.

The last board of the BPP had unanimously cleared 104 names, along with hers, as being eligible for housing under the category. But the new trust has said that it will first ascertain the merit of the applicants.

However, during Wednesday’s hearing, when trustee Rustom Tirandaz said “you are all liars. Most of you do not deserve a house; you come only to seek sympathy from the charity commissioner”, a few people couldn’t hold back their tears. They say they may now be individually targeted and are afraid that they will never be given a house.

Meanwhile, the joint charity commissioner again deferred the matter, this time to January 14. The commissioner, who was hearing arguments, passed the order when the BPP wanted the stay on the freeze in allotment of houses to people other than the 104 removed.

Joint commissioner N V Deshmukh said that even if the BPP felt that the 104 did not merit homes under the category, they should prove malafide intention by the previous punchayet trust in passing their names as meritorious candidates, or place before him the names of more needy people who deserve homes.

Persi Gandhi, who appeared on behalf of the trust, said, “Your lordship, if you give us the time for that, I can discuss it with the trust and come back to you.” He then asked for three weeks, and his request was granted.