Bengal mulls new policy to promote affordable housing

| Updated on: Feb 11, 2011
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Faced with land acquisition problems and pressure from property developers regarding land use patterns, the State government is planning to bring into effect a new housing policy that will lay down guidelines for realtors and provide them sops for setting up ‘affordable housing' for economically weaker section (EWS) and lower income group (LIG) categories.

The new housing policy, work on which is currently on, is likely to be unveiled in June this year. It will be on the lines of the National Urban Housing and Habitat Policy 2007.

Mr Debashis Sen, Principal Secretary, State Urban Development Department, told Business Line : “A special committee has already been set up to work on the modalities of the state housing policy. We are now in discussion with the various stakeholders.”

Realty expo

Mr Sen was speaking on the sidelines of Realty Expo 2011, organised by the Confederation of Real Estate Developers Association of India Bengal (Credai Bengal) and the Indian Chamber of Commerce (ICC).

The policy will encourage construction of affordable housing and provide sops to developers for taking up projects catering to the housing requirements of the EWS and LIG categories.

PPP model

It will also lays stress on the public private partnership (PPP) model of development with benefits such as tax relief, single-window clearance and easy registration for stakeholders and developers. Speeding up the registration process for realtors will also be a part of the policy, an official of the State Urban Development Department said.

Mr Santosh Rungta, President, Credai, while welcoming the move reiterated the need to have a proper housing policy to make land available to developers.

“The State government should make land available to us and come clear on the land use pattern here. A proper housing policy is the need of the hour,” he said.

Urban poverty

The number of urban poor in the country increases by 4.4 million every year, Mr Navin Kumar, Secretary, Union Urban Development Ministry, said at the Realty Expo.

Mr Kumar while calling for private participation to cater to the housing needs of the people, stressed on the fact that basic services such as infrastructure, water availability, sanitation facilities and urban transportation were needed for people in the lower income group (LIG) in urban areas.

Published on February 11, 2011

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