264 houses to be built in phase one

The State’s pilot project on Rajiv Awas Yojana (RAY), a Central housing programme, is soon set for a launch at Mathipuram Colony, Vizhinjam.

Under the project, houses will be constructed for 1,032 families in Vizhinjam. In the first phase, 264 houses will be built in the colony.

RAY also covers renovation of houses, building of parks, anganwadis, and deep-freezer units (considering it is a fishing colony). A network of underground electricity cables are also being considered for the coastal sea.

In a month

On September 11, the city Corporation signed an agreement with the construction agency, Hindustan Prefab Limited (HPL), which will now subcontract the work — a process that will be over in a month.

Since the Detailed Project Report (DPR) was approved in 2011, a series of hurdles relating to Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) clearances and availability of land had cropped up, threatening to derail the project.

Lessons were learnt from RAY’s predecessor, the Basic Services for the Urban Poor (BSUP) scheme, which ran into problems in its later stages.

To avoid discrepancies on the beneficiary list and in the allotment of houses, RAY was formulated with emphasis on planning and thorough surveys.

In the run-up to the launch, RAY officials and Harbour ward councillor Sudheer Khan have been meeting Mathipuram residents and filling the gaps in the survey carried out by Kudumbasree, RAY’s State nodal agency.

Gaps galore

Many forms were found to be incomplete and even one missing column in a single beneficiary’s profile would stall the process.

Recently, a Cluster Development Committee (CDC) verification session was organised to double-check those who will be covered in the first phase of the project. Officials presented data collected from around 70 residents to the CDC, who then confirmed the details.

Identities of the remaining persons will be verified during the time HPL takes to build the transit accommodation.

Fund sharing

According to an HPL official, the pilot project will be realised in four phases, in around three years. The Union Ministry of Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation has already sanctioned 50 per cent of the Rs.72 crore required for the project.

The remaining amount will be borne by the State government and the local body.

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