[In a] landmark move for more than 4 million people in the cramped capital of over 18 million, enshrining for the first time their right to own the shacks and dwellings they call home. 

The plan to regularise Delhi’s unauthorised settlements had been floated for more than a decade. Now it is finally law, opening the door to better services and security for millions of migrant workers living in hundreds of ramshackle settlements. 

“Citizens did not live in unauthorised colonies of Delhi because they wanted to. They lived in urban squalor because they had no choice,” tweeted Housing Minister Hardeep Singh Puri on Thursday. 

“(The bill) will bring a wave of change.” 

Parliament passed the bill on Wednesday. 

However it excludes nearly 70 slums in protected areas, such as forests, or near monuments, flood plains and rich enclaves, said Rajeev Kumar Jain, a spokesman for the housing ministry.