National

Government plans 20 million houses for urban poor

The Union Cabinet approved on Wednesday the launch of the “Housing for All by 2022” programme for the rehabilitation of slum-dwellers and promotion of affordable housing for the urban poor. The target is to provide nearly 20 million houses over seven years.

The programme is a key promise in the Bharatiya Janata Party’s manifesto for the Lok Sabha election in 2014 — a “pucca” house for every family by the 75th year of Independence.

An official statement said a Central grant of an average Rs. 1 lakh would be available for a house under the slum rehabilitation programme. But the State governments could exercise flexibility in spending the grant for any slum rehabilitation project using land as a resource for providing houses to slum-dwellers.

“Under the credit-linked interest subsidy component, an interest subsidy of 6.5 per cent on housing loans availed up to a tenure of 15 years will be provided to economically weaker sections/lower income group (EWS/LIG) categories, wherein the subsidy pay-out on a net present value basis would be about Rs. 2.3 lakh per house for both categories,” it said.

The Central assistance of Rs. 1.5 lakh a house for the EWS category would be provided in partnership and for beneficiary-led individual house construction or enhancement.

Telecom Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said here on Wednesday that the “Housing for All” programme would be a Centrally sponsored scheme.

“The scheme will be implemented as a Centrally sponsored scheme, except the credit-linked subsidy component, which will be implemented as a Central sector scheme,” he said.

He, however, clarified that the proposal cleared by the Cabinet on Wednesday only dealt with urban areas and the rural component would be introduced later.

The official statement said the scheme would cover all urban areas consisting of 4,041 statutory towns with initial focus on 500 Class I cities. The programme would be implemented in three phases: Phase I (April 2015 to March 2017) to cover 100 cities to be selected from willing States and Union Territories; Phase IIA (April 2017 to March 2019) to cover additional 200 cities; and Phase III (April 2019 to March 2022) to cover the remaining cities.

The government said the task at hand was to build an estimated two crore houses, though the exact number would depend on a demand assessment carried out all by all the States or cities by integrating Aadhaar numbers, Jan Dhan Yojana account numbers or any such identification of intended beneficiaries.

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Printable version | Sep 20, 2020 12:30:43 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/housing-for-all-by-2022-government-plans-20-million-houses-for-urban-poor/article7326997.ece

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