NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ambitious rural housing scheme, which aims to provide homes to the needy, is running far behind schedule. While the flagship scheme promises to provide one crore houses by March 2019, less than 10 per cent of the target has been completed. The scheme is considered a game-changer as it is for the poor, and not much time is left for the next Lok Sabha polls in early 2019.
Nearly 7 lakh houses have been completed across the country. About 55 lakh houses have been sanctioned, and 68 lakh beneficiaries have been registered. Officials of the Ministry of Rural Development said lakhs of houses are under construction and will be completed in the coming year. A senior official said that March 2018, 51 lakh houses will be completed. Work is at an advanced stage on 43 lakh houses.
The official said that identification of beneficiaries eligible for assistance and their prioritisation is done using information from Socio Economic and Caste Census, ensuring total transparency and objectivity. Gram Sabha identifies beneficiaries at the ground level. Screening of beneficiaries has been done in most of parts, and about 70 per cent people have been identified for the scheme.
Under the vision of the goal of ‘Housing for all by 2022’, the UPA regime’s scheme, Indira Awas Yojana, was revamped to Pradhan Mantri Awaas Yojana: Gramin under the NDA government in March 2016. Under the scheme, financial assistance is provided for construction of pucca houses to the homeless and those living in dilapidated structures.
`1.20 lakh is provided as assistance in plain areas and `1.30 lakh hilly states or difficult areas. The unit size is 25 sq m, including a dedicated area for hygienic cooking. Beneficiaries are also given an additional support of `12,000 for building toilets through the Swachh Bharat Mission: Gramin scheme, and 90 days of wages worth `18,000 towards construction of houses under MGNREGA.
Since the scheme targets the poor and not much time is left to complete the construction of houses, the government raised the budget allocation to 23,000 crore for 2017-18 from `16,000 crore last year.
As per the Census data of 2011, rural India has 17.98 crore households, of which 3.91 crore live in one- or two-room kutcha dwellings. The scheme targets one-third of this population by March 2019.
PM Awas Yojana (Rural)
Target by March 2019: one crore pucca houses
Nearly 7 lakh houses completed
About 55 lakhs houses sanctioned
About 68 lakhs beneficiaries registered