NOIDA, May 3 (UNI) The Army's ambitious welfare housing programme received an incremental boost today with Army Chief General JJ Singh laying the foundation stone of a 2,600 unit housing scheme at Greater NOIDA near the capital.
The Army Welfare Housing Organisation (AWHO) scheme, spread over 95 acres and having a total of 2,600 dwelling units, is expected to be complete by 2007 -- construction work on 844 units has already commenced. The second phase of the scheme will have 720 dwelling units (DUs).
The entire project is being developed as a self-sufficient township having facilities like a Club, Swimming Pool, Shopping Complexes, Schools, Hospitals, Community Centres and the like. The complex will also have large open areas effectively landscaped with parks and fountains.
So far, AWHO has constructed 14,922 dwelling units at various places and handed them over to Army personnel. Besides, a total of 4,288 dwelling units are under construction at present at ten different stations in India -- planning is also in hand for the construction of 3,242 more dwelling units in 13 stations.
In addition to the construction of dwelling units, AWHO has also constructed certain institutional buildings for the Army like the Army Group Insurance building and the United Services Institute at New Delhi, Army Public School NOIDA, Army Public School Beas, Army College of Dental Sciences Secunderabad and the Army Wives Welfare Association Vocational Centre and Hostel in New Delhi.
AWHO was set up in 1979 and is registered as a society under the Societies Registration Act. The aim of the organisation is to build houses/flats for serving and retired Army personnel and their widows in stations all over the country to enable the soldiers own a house of their own before they retire.
AWHO functions on self-financing basis. The Chief of the Army Staff is the AWHO Patron and the Adjutant General is the ex-officio Chairman. The organisation is run by a Board of Management which includes senior Army officers from the Army Headquarters as well as from all Command Headquarters. Land for the various projects is acquired either through the State Governments or through private parties.
AWHO has also recently started the 'Jai Jawan Awas Yojna' making economical houses for the serving Junior Commissioned Officers and Other Ranks of the Army. These houses are being made in proximity to Army cantonments so that the families residing there can utilise the facilities of hospitals, schools and the like available in these cantonments.
The first such scheme started in Jaipur in October last year while two other schemes are shortly to commence -- of these one is an additional scheme at Jaipur while the other is in Pune.
UNI DG PM RK2005