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Govt. plans 20 million houses for urban poor

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Some basic info to understand this news better:

  • Urban poverty in India is over 25 percent; some 81 million people live in urban areas on incomes that are below the poverty line. At the national level, rural poverty remains higher than urban poverty, but the gap is closing. By 2030, urbanisation in India is projected to reach 50 percent.
  • According to a 2001 census, India’s cities have a slum population of 42.6 million (23.7 percent of the urban population). The majority (11.2 million) are in Maharashtra, whose capital city Mumbai is home to the Dharavi slum. While the slum population has increased, the number of slums has decreased – resulting in greater density.

Now, the news

  • 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 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.
  • The proposal cleared by the Cabinet only dealt with urban areas and the rural component would be introduced later.
  • 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.

20 million houses for urban poor

Know more on this news topic:

  • A Technology Sub-mission under the Mission would be set up to facilitate adoption of modern, innovative and green technologies and building material for faster and quality construction of houses. The Technology Sub-Mission will also facilitate preparation and adoption of layout designs and building plans suitable for various geo-climatic zones. It will also assist States/Cities in deploying disaster resistant and environment friendly technologies.
  • The process of project formulation and approval in accordance with Mission Guidelines would be left to the States, so that projects can be formulated, approved and implemented faste