Selja for housing facilities for urban poor

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Kurukshetra, Sept 17 (UNI) The Union Ministry of Housing and Urban development has directed the state governments to create more opportunities for housing for the economically weaker section (EWS) in the urban areas.

While talking to mediaperson here last evening, Union Minister for Housing and Urban development Kumari Selja, who was here to inaugurate a hostel for the boys in the Vidya Vihar Gurukul, said there was demand of over 2.5 crore houses for the EWS and the low income group (LIG) people in the urban sector, for which the union government had allocated a budget of Rs 150 crore as 50 per cent contribution to develop accomodations for the poor in 63 cities of the country during the current year.

Ms Selja stressed the need to have public-private joint venture to build new low-price houses for the poor.

''At least 20 to 25 per cent of the total construction by the real estate builders and private property developers should be constructed for the EWS and LIG classes in the towns and cities so that the ''eyesore'' areas could be removed from the cities.

She also stressed upon the state governments to make it mendatory for the private developers to build 25 houses for the poor classes in their enterprises in respective states.

The Minister said the municipal councils and metropolitan councils should formulate pro-poor budgets after conducting suveys to know the exact data on the poor in the slums so that the government could take corrective measures for their amelioration.

The Minister said the government was seriously thinking of providing more facilities to the urban poor women as they were lagging far behind the rural womenfolk in their earnings. ''The urban poor women hardly have any opportunities for employment in cities than in rural sector where women can work in fields during the year or rear milch cattle for their livelihood,'' she said.

''To meet their occupational needs the ministry is pondering over new proposals which will be reflected in newer shape of the present Swaran Jayanti Swarozgar Yojna, so that urban women could get loans and training for their ventures,'' Ms Selja said.

UNI

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