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PMO directs all Government Departments to Spot Vacant Lands to Push Affordable Housing

The Prime Minister’s Office has asked all government departments to identify utilised land, especially in developed government colonies, to plan affordable housing projects, a move aimed at giving a fillip to efforts to fulfil the BJP’s poll promise of housing for all by 2022.


The government wants to build a land bank to give a push to the affordable housing initiative, officials said. The states are facing a problem in planning housing projects because of paucity of land.

With this initiative, the PMO hopes to identify land packets and then urge state governments to send proposals wherever there is availability of land.

A senior government official told ET, “The PMO is monitoring the progress closely. Our experience is that some states are performing better than others because they already have their beneficiary lists ready and land availability is no problem there. So now directives have gone to all ministries to prepare a list of colonies where ..

The urban development ministry is trying to identify land within developed government colonies as these already have basic amenities and approvals will not pose a problem.

So far, the Centre has approved housing projects worth Rs 90,000 crore across 30 states and Union Territories. The government has approved construction of 16.42 lakh affordable houses, with Tamil Nadu leading the initiative at 2.27 lakh houses, followed by Andhra Pradesh with 1.94 lakh houses and Madhya Pradesh ..

Housing for All by 2022 was a major poll promise of the BJP in the run-up to 2014 parliamentary election. The government is concerned at the slow progress in certain states such as Kerala, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand and Delhi, which have not been able to get many proposals sanctioned.

“With this initiative we hope to tell the states, you have this land available at a certain place. Now send us a proposal because even if it is central land we will get the approvals done. This will hopefully increase the pace of implementation,” the official said.

Highways authority to construct 16-km elevated corridor on Sohna Road

Travelling between Gurgaon and Alwar in Rajasthan via Nuh in Mewat on Sohna Road is set to become smooth as the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) is mulling to revise an old plan of constructing a 5.5-km elevated corridor and extending it to 16.5 km.

The road from Rajiv Chowk to Sohna, popularly known as Sohna Road, is now National Highway 248 and it extends till Alwar in Rajasthan.

“The detailed project report (DPR) on the 5.5-km road was almost ready as work on it was underway for the last six months. Now, the NHAI is thinking of extending the elevated corridor plan to 16.5 km but a final decision is yet to be taken,” an NHAI official said. The entire project, including construction of the elevated road and road widening till Alwar, would roughly cost Rs 1100 crore, the official said.

The official said land would be acquired for the entire project from 54 villages between Gurgaon and Alwar districts.

Currently, commuters travelling from Delhi and wanting to go to Nuh and Alwar turn left at Rajiv Chowk on NH-8 and struggle to make their way through the congestion on Sohna Road via Subhash Chowk, Badshahpur, Bhondsi, Nuh and further.

The NHAI, as soon as it took over the road from the public works department (PWD) in 2015, had planned the construction of an elevated corridor along Badshahpur and Bhondsi villages that are outside Gurgaon’s urban areas.

The traffic movement on Sohna Road increased manifold over the years and hence the Haryana Urban Development Authority transferred it to the PWD in 2012. Later, NHAI took over the road.

However, the flyover at Subhash Chowk for vehicles from Huda City Centre to Hero Honda Chowk cutting across Sohna would cause inconvenience to the highways authority during the construction of the elevated corridor.

Ramesh Singh of Badshahpur said, “The elevated corridor would bring relief to local residents and it should come at earliest as Sohna Road has become accident prone after it was declared a national highway. The volume of traffic has also increased manifold.”

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