An inquiry by the district administration into a housing scheme for urban poor in Noida and Greater Noida has brought to the fore large-scale irregularities.
The scheme named after Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) founder Kanshiram had been launched by the previous Mayawati government across the state. A team headed by the chief development officer (CDO) Prakash Bindu found that more than two dozen houses allotted to “urban poor” in Greater Noida had been locked for the past two years.
It has been found allottees, who are supposed to be homeless, are in possession of ancestral housing property elsewhere. The team has sent its interim report to Gautam Budh Nagar district magistrate (DM) MKS Sundaram.
“How these housing units were allotted free of cost to these people has puzzled the administration. Once the inquiry is complete, the DM will take necessary action that may include cancellation of allotments after giving the allottees time to justify the allotments,” said the CDO.
The DM had ordered a probe after Uttar Pradesh minister for urban development Mohd Azam Khan in April said that “grave bunglings” had taken place in the allotment of flats under Kanshi Ram Shehri Gharib Awas Yojna in the state and “undesirable” persons had occupied the flats meant for the poor.
Khan then said “undesirable and undeserving occupants of Kashiram Awas have given those flats on rent to other inhabitants. Inquiring authorities will “delve deep into the bungling” and those found to have flouted norms will have to vacate, he said.
During the Mayawati government, the scheme was launched for poor people. Preference was given to SC/ST applicants. Houses were allotted free of cost to the urban poor. The administration has constructed 500 houses each in Noida (Sector 45) and Greater Noida (Ghodi Bachheda) and allotted them to applicants in 2010. Another 1,000 houses are ready. Some of these have also been allotted.
Last year, the Gautam Budh Nagar district administration sealed 11 flats in Noida following detection of irregularities in allotment. Later eight fresh complaints surfaced. Some flats were found to have been allotted to people “who were not actually poor”. During the crackdown, the administration found one person in possession of more than one unit. In some cases, unauthorised persons were found to have grabbed houses. Some allottees were also found to have either sold their units or rented them.