Housing for All: A shot in the arm for Jharkhand realtors

  • Sanjoy Dey, Hindustan Times, Ranchi
  • Updated: Oct 10, 2015 16:01 IST
The Centre has selected 15 Jharkhand cities to make them slum-free by 2022 under the Housing for All projects. (Diwakar Prasad/ HT Photo)

The Centre’s ‘Housing for All’ scheme, which is set to take off next year in Jharkhand, will give a much-needed shot in the arm of the state realtors, who have been facing business slump due to multiple local complexities, builders said on Friday.

Their hope is based on the June 25 Housing for All guideline from the Centre which allows private builders to develop part of the land used for slum housing for commercial purposes. However, they will have to build the houses for the slum dwellers free of charge. They will, however , get `1 lakh per house assistance from the central government, municipal administration director Shashi Ranjan Prasad Singh said.

The private builders admit that the guideline partly addresses the problem of non-availability of land which is the major cause of the slump in the business besides other irritants, like restrictive building bylaws, master plans and registration fee anomalies.

Singh said other problems were also being addressed in the light of the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (Housing for All), which has a special emphasis on making the state slum-free by 2022. In fact, a meeting with state builders and architects has been called on Saturday to discuss their role in the centre’s slum housing project and dispel their doubts about the revised building bylaws.

Jharkhand president of Confederation of Real Estate Development Association of India (CREDAI), Kumud Jha, said the project would bring the real estate business out of the ongoing slump only when it was implemented on a large scale.Jha said the availability of land was a big problem in the state. The Centre’s slum housing project at least offered some business ground to the builders to bounce back to boom again.

Builders Association of India (BAI) state president RS Agarwal, however, said that everything depended on how the government made it a “business of ease” by simplifying procedures. He said the government should make sure that the private partner of the project (builder) got a straight and easy access to work on the given piece of land. Because, much time and efforts is consumed in getting through the procedural hurdles. The sooner a builder starts, the faster he completes the job, he said.

READ: Housing for All norms leave minister, officials confused

Singh said some clarity was being sought on the slums located on the central government land, like PSUs and railways. It might take some time. “But, we can start the project on the state government land,” he said.

Official figures, however, show that a majority of slums have mushroomed on the land under the central government’s control. More than half of 255 slums in Ranchi are on the central government’s land.

The Centre has selected 15 Jharkhand cities to make them slum-free by 2022 under the Housing for All project.

The state urban development department has received more than 1.89 lakh applications for houses so far. Dhanbad (55,538), Jamshedpur (45,698) and Ranchi (28,242) are the top three districts in the state from where the maximum number of applications have been received, officials said.

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