How to meet the housing requirement of urban poor

By R K Arora, Chairman, Supertech Limited

India is a rapidly urbanising country facing development challenges connected with speedy growth. One of the key challenges for a budding country like India is urban migration, which is further exacerbated by restricted resources to meet intensifying housing demands. The high percentage of labour immigration from rural areas to cities has contributed to urban congestion, pressure on basic amenities such as water and sanitation, etc, and most of all, housing shortages in cities across India.

Further, the country’s total urban housing deficiency is anticipated to be about 30 million by 2022. This constantly increasing gap between demand and supply in the affordable housing section is forcing the public to live in slums and informal settlements. It is understandable that the subject, if not dealt capably, can have a marvellous negative impact on the country’s financial growth and poverty reduction efforts.

Real Estate developers and private players are focusing mainly on MIG and HIG segments due to the higher returns from these projects. On the other hand, high land costs, interruption in project approvals, rising raw material costs and low-profit margins have made low-cost housing projects less attractive to the private developers. Also, housing, as well as Affordable Housing being a state subject creates complexities in implementation because of unstable financial condition of development authorities, state/ city-level agencies and their restricted capacities in supervision in these projects.

Role of Government:

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