The Union government’s policies over the last six years have restored the faith of consumers that they can own homes of their own and rely on laws to support them if builders fail to deliver on time, Prime Minister Narenda Modi on Friday said while laying the foundation stone of the Light House Project under the Global Housing Technology Challenge-India scheme across six states.
The project aims to construct of low-cost houses using alternative global technologies, materials and processes in six cities — Indore (Madhya Pradesh), Rajkot (Gujarat), Chennai (Tamil Nadu), Ranchi (Jharkhand), Agartala (Tripura) and Lucknow (Uttar Pradesh). About 1,000 houses at each location, along with allied infrastructure facilities, are meant to be constructed in a year’s time.
Six chief ministers were present for the meeting, Shivraj Singh Chauhan from MP, Yogi Adityanath from UP, Biplab Deb from Tripura, E Palanisami from Tamil Nadu, Jagan Reddy from Andhra Pradesh and Hemant Soren from Jharkhand.
Referring to the project, which he described as an incubation centre, the PM said the government was committed to delivering on its promise of “housing for all” by 2022, and was unwavering in its vows to provide affordable housing for the rural and urban poor, and affordable rented accommodation for migrant workers.
The latest project, Modi said, will also strengthen cooperative federalism.
“People were losing hope of owning a house even after putting in everything that they had saved. Houses remained on paper… People had also lost faith whether the law of the land will help them if they got into a dispute with the builder,” he said.
To address these concerns, steps taken by the government over the past six years have made it easy for a hardworking, middle class family to own a house and restored their faith, Modi said.
His reference was to RERA, or the Real Estate Regulation Act, introduced in 2016 to protect the interest of homebuyers from malpractices and builders defaulting on deliveries.
“RERA has helped the people believe in reality projects again and that the projects will be completed. Today, 60,000 real-estate projects are registered under RERA. Thousands of cases have also been solved under the law,” Modi said.
Even as the PM appreciated the efforts made by the states in providing housing for the poor; he criticised previous governments for not prioritising the sector. “Housing plans were not the priority of the central government in the past. They did not care about the details of quality of construction. There was a chalta hai, chalne do (let it be) approach… why shouldn’t the country get new technology, and the houses we build should be chust (swift) and durust (sturdy),” he said.
The Prime Minister also announced the winners of the Affordable Sustainable Housing Accelerators — Uttar Pradesh topped the list followed by Madhya Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, and Tripura.