By Accommodation Times News Services
Union Minister for Rural Development, Panchayati Raj and Drinking Water and Sanitation Chaudhary Birender Singh said, our aim under Pradhan Mantri Awaas Yojana-Gramin is to construct 1 crore houses in three years. He said this while addressing the National Workshop on Housing for All-Rural in New Delhi, on Wednesday, 13th April.
Minister informed that in the years from 1985 to 2015, around 3.5 crores houses have been constructed.
Emphasising his speech he said, “Housing for the poor is a priority area for our Government. The Government has declared the intention to provide a good quality house for all by the year 2022. As part of this, we have launched the Pradhan Mantri Awaas Yojana (PMAY). Approval for the urban component had been given in 2015 itself. I am pleased to share with you that rural component has also been approved by the Cabinet on 23rd March, 2016.”
He further said that the entire rural housing programme has been revamped in Pradhan Mantri Awaas Yojana. Subsidy provided by the state and central government has increased by more than 70%. From Rs.70,000, the allocation has now gone up to Rs.1,20,000. In hilly and difficult areas it has increased from Rs.75,000 to Rs.1,30,000. In addition, the Government has also made available cost of unskilled labour for 90 days from MGNREGA and another Rs.12,000 from Swachh Bharat Mission funds for Toilets. All these taken together would ensure that a rural beneficiary gets more than Rs.1,50,000 for house construction.
The Central Government will spend Rs.81,975 crores on rural housing from now on till 2018-19. In addition, States would also be spending more than Rs.50,000 crores as their share. The annual allocation from Central Government will go up from Rs.10,025 crores to more than Rs.27,000 crores.
The NDA Government has revamped MGNREGA and increased the allocation and mandays. Like MGNREGA, Pradhan Mantri Awaas Yojana also generates employment and wealth in rural areas. Except for steel and cement, all materials used in rural housing such as wood, sand, bricks are produced in villages. The labour for construction is also local.
The beneficiary also has the option to avail loans upto Rs.70,000 from primary lending institutions. National Housing Bank and NABARD are the regulators for housing sector lending.
The list of beneficiaries will be available in the public domain. The criteria for selection is also well known and transparent. The most vulnerable people, selected on the basis of deprivations identified in the SECC, will get priority in the allocation of houses. Therefore, the selection of beneficiaries will be based on transparent norms applied to data available in the public domain.
In order to avoid delays in the payments to beneficiaries delayed, all administrative and financial transactions will be through the electronic platform, ‘AwaasSoft’.
The Rural Development Minister said, “Our Government has invested heavily in infrastructure. Construction is the fastest growing employment sector. There will be a lot of demand for masons, even from rural areas.”