Housing for all – Addressing housing shortage in urban areas requires urgent, concerted efforts

Source: The post is based on the article “Housing for all – Addressing housing shortage in urban areas requires urgent, concerted efforts” published in The Hindu on 17th August 2023.

Syllabus: GS 2 – Government Policies and Interventions for Development in various sectors and Issues arising out of their Design and Implementation.

Relevance: About the proposed housing scheme

News: The PM recently introduced a scheme for urban poor housing while PMAY-U was extended until December 2024. This raises concerns about PMAY-U’s goal achievement.

What are the concerns with Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana-Urban (PMAY-U)?

In the last eight years since the launch of PMAY-U, only two–thirds of the sanctioned houses were either completed or handed over.

Central assistance has been limited to 24.4%, with 16% from States and urban local bodies; the remaining 60% is to be borne by beneficiaries.

Out of the initially projected ₹8.31 lakh crore investment for 1.23 crore houses, the burden of ₹4.95 lakh crore falls on the beneficiaries, who are primarily the urban poor.

Hence, in such a situation a new scheme should include provisions that benefit the beneficiaries and are better than PMAY-U.

Read More: PM announces new housing scheme for urban poor; low interest rate loans on offer and Cabinet approves continuation of Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana-Urban (PMAY-U) – “Housing for All” Mission up to 31st December 2024

What provisions can be included in the proposed new housing scheme?

In the suggested plan, the beneficiaries’ portion would be reduced to around 40%, due to their limited income.

Moreover, the Parliamentary Committee’s recommendations for PMAY-U should guide the new housing scheme’s design.

The Committee proposed moving away from uniform and fixed assistance and adopting flexibility based on factors like topography. Investigating causes behind poor housing quality and unoccupancy is also advised.

What is the way ahead?

Expensive land, restricted floor space, and numerous certifications from various agencies impact urban housing success.

Hence, to address this, the central government should facilitate discussions involving State governments, local bodies, urban planners, professionals, financial institutions, and activists.

Print Friendly and PDF