NEW DELHI: Ministry of housing and urban poverty alleviation will be merged with the ministry of urban development soon. Sources said that the initiative will help in better implementation of infra projects across the country.
Currently, Union minister M Venkaiah Naidu heads both the ministries which operate from same building in New Delhi. According to sources, it is expected that the process of merger will begin very soon and both the ministry will become one ministry and might be named as ‘Ministry of Urban Affairs and Housing’.
Nandita Chatterjee, secretary, ministry of housing, retired last week and a senior official said that no official has been appointed to replace her. In fact, secretary, urban development will look after the works of housing as well and this has been decided ahead of the merger of the ministries, added the official.
Earlier, a group of secretaries had recommended merger of the ministries and as per the plans the schemes and departments of the ministries will also be converged. This will also bring down the cost of running two separate ministries.
Officials said that the initiative is aimed at improving planning and implementation of schemes of housing sector. “Housing for All is the major scheme of Narendra Modi government and the government has major thrust on it. Merger of the ministries will only help speeding up the process and projects could be implemented in shorter time. There have been some instances in which lack of coordination was observed in both the ministries leading to unnecessary delay in project execution. Even earlier, both the ministries were under a single ministry, said an official.
This is not the first time that two ministries will be merged in the present NDA regime. Earlier, during January, 2016, the government had merged the Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs (MOIA) with the Ministry of External Affairs.