State government approves housing for the urban poor

  • 10 Jan 2015
  • Hindustan Times (Delhi)

 Decks have been cleared for making Faridabad a slum free city with the state government approving a Rs 2,400 crore project to provide housing for the urban poor. After Mumbai, Faridabad has the largest number of slum clusters in the country. Municipal Corporation of Faridabad (MCF) commissioner, Dr Amit Kumar Aggarwal, said the state government approved the proposal at a meeting of the Urban Local Bodies Department chaired by Chief Minister Manohar Lal, held in Chandigarh on December 16.

MCF has made 1,986 flats for the urban poor in Dabua.

“The proposal to make Faridabad slum free, duly approved by the state government, has been forwarded to the Centre. The Centre is not going to release its share in the Rs 2,400 crore in one go. We will make a detailed project report of the particular part of the proposal according to the funds sanctioned by the Centre. We have already given the priorities in our action plan for making slum free city,” he said.

As per the scheme, 50% of the cost of the project is to be borne by the Union government, 20% by the state government and the remaining 30% is to be funded by the municipal corporation.

MCF had got a survey done in 2012 to assess the number of slums, their population and the area of land encroached upon by the slum dwellers. It was found that there are 66 slum clusters occupying over 350 acre of land with an estimated population of two lakh people.

A detailed project report for their rehabilitation was also prepared that envisaged 48,000 houses to accommodate them. It was proposed that multi-storied flats be raised at the places where these slum clusters exist. It would not only benefit the slum dwellers who would get housing facility in developed multi-storied houses but would also result in MCF and other government departments getting their land back, so that it could be used for other commercial projects.

In August 2013, MCF had started an exercise to make Faridabad slum free by appointing a Transaction Advisor to facilitate the construction of 4,500 flats for the urban poor in AC Nagar that is a slum cluster at present. As per the MCF record, 4,593 acre of land belonging to the corporation is disputed out of its total land of 6,473 acre. A large chunk of the disputed land is under encroachment where slum clusters have come up.

Global tenders were floated for the appointment of Transaction Advisor for the redevelopment of the NeelamBata Road jhuggi cluster on a public-private partnership basis. The proposal from qualified and experienced consultancy firms for financial feasibility study and transaction advisory services were invited and a Mumbai-based company was chosen for the purpose. The idea is to provide better housing and civic amenities to jhuggi jhonpri dwellers and get its land free from encroachment. Allottees were to be given flats at cheap rates. However, there was no movement forward in the matter since then. The approval of the plan by the state government has infused life in the issue of rehabilitation of the urban poor that had been hanging fire.

Haryana Urban Development Authority has already made 2,050 flats for the poor in Sector 56 and 1,030 flats in Sector 62, while MCF has made 1,986 flats in Dabua and 1,280 flats in Bapu Nagar.

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