The government is planning to advance its deadline for meeting the target under the ‘housing for all’ initiative for rural India by three months through December 2023, a senior official told .
The rural development ministry is in talks with states to expedite the relevant processes and help complete the construction of houses fast, said the official. If materialised, it will be a critical achievement for the Modi government ahead of the 2024 general election.
As part of this initiative, a revised deadline for constructing 29.5 million houses under the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (Gramin) by March 2024 was set. The initial plan of wrapping it up by 2022 was disrupted by the sudden Covid outbreak in 2020.
So far, 28.6 million houses have been sanctioned by the Centre, of which 22.1 million have been built across states and Union territories, said the official. The rural development ministry is firming up the latest action plan on this.
The ministry had set a construction target of 5.20 million houses for FY23, against the actual building of 4.24 million a year before. As many as 3.85 million houses have been completed until March 22 this fiscal, said the official quoted above. Officials are confident that the FY23 target will be realised, as the reporting of completion of construction usually gathers pace in the last two weeks of the financial year.
For the next fiscal, the ministry is targeting the completion of 5.73 million houses to achieve the overall target, said the official. However, it is now striving to achieve the target by December, he added.
Under the PMAY-G, the Centre bears 60% of the construction cost in most states, while state governments pitch in with the rest. However, the Centre’s contribution goes up to 90% for north-eastern and hilly states and to 100% for Union territories.
The Centre has sharply raised its outlay for the PMAY-G in its revised estimate for FY23 to Rs 48,422 crore from the budget estimate of Rs 20,000 crore in a bid to give a fresh leg-up to the pace of house construction.