Mumbaiites hoping to benefit from the state government's rental housing scheme may be in for some disappointment. A state-appointed committee reworking the rental housing plan has recommended only 15% of the houses built under the scheme be given on rent.
The committee has said the remaining houses should be given to urban local bodies for housing project affected people, some to the state government for housing their employees while the rest sold in the open market as affordable houses.
The committee has also said the size of houses should go from 160 sq ft to 320 sq ft.
The rental housing scheme was launched in 2008 with the aim of creating five lakh rental houses in five years. However, the scheme has evoked a poor response from builders. So far, the MMRDA has cleared applications of only 2.58 lakh homes and only 11,000 houses are under various stages of completion.
A worried chief minister, Prithviraj Chavan, had then set up a committee led by Mumbai Metropolitan Regional Development Authority (MMRDA) commissioner Rahul Asthana and chief executive officer of Mumbai Housing and Area Development Authority (Mhada) Satish Gavai, along with field level officers from both authorities, to go through the policy and provide suggestions.
The committee suggested for those projects where construction has begun, flats of 160 sq ft should be built. "For those with permission but where construction has not yet commenced and for all new proposals the housing unit size should be 320 sq ft," the committee said, suggesting the project be renamed affordable rental housing from rental housing.
It has suggested that 25% of the houses built under the scheme be given to urban local bodies like councils or corporations where the projects are coming up for housing PAPs.