Mumbai, Aug 30 (UNI) The rental housing scheme, initiated by the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA), got a major boost today, with the Union Housing Ministry deciding to post its contents on its website for other states to access the information and implement the same.
Union Minister of State for Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation Kumari Selja visited the MMRDA's headquarters today to get an overview of the rental housing scheme. She was given an overview by Metropolitan Commissioner Ratnakar Gaikwad and other senior officials.
Complimenting the MMRDA for initiating the scheme, Ms Selja said it serves as a major boost for the rental housing concept and serves the cause of the economically weaker section of the society very aptly.
There is a shortage of 24.7 million houses in the country and rental housing could contribute significantly to reduce this shortage, she said.
She said the scheme would serve the purpose of those who are not very well off, especially those coming from other cities or have been transferred, and are not in the position to buy a house in Mumbai.
The scheme is the right step in an attempt to eradicate slums, which form a major part of the city.
''Development of the poor should be taken into consideration with utmost priority,'' said Ms Selja.
The Minister said the national urban housing policy encourages rental housing. She said she was happy to learn that Maharashtra was the first to implement the scheme.
She said the rental housing scheme is the perfect example of best practices for other states to emulate. Therefore, the information would be useful for other state governments to replicate.
''The rental housing scheme is envisaged to construct five lakh houses of 160 sq ft each in the next five years and is the biggest project undertaken in independent India to provide affordable housing to economically deprived sections of the community,'' said Mr Gaikwad.
The scheme comes under the Maharashtra Government's Housing policy and aims to provide affordable houses for the economically backward on a rental basis. In the first phase, MMRDA plans to construct two lakh houses of 160 sq ft each within a year. So far, Dhanashree Developers has agreed to construct 35,000 houses at Vasai and a letter of acceptance has been issued by the MMRDA, a MMRDA release said.
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