Infrastructure project status for affordable housing
“About 50% of Mumbai's population lives in slums. In cities like Delhi, too, a large number of people are either homeless or live in slums. If this has to change, then we will have to build affordable housing even in premium locations of mega cities,” said Union housing minister Ajay Maken while addressing a conference organized by the Confederation of Indian Industry (“CII”) along with the Centre for Policy Research (“CPR’). He indicated that affordable housing projects in metros, for instance, Mumbai and Delhi might be given 'infrastructure-project' status soon. If the same is realized, the clearances from the state government would become easier.
There was also a suggestion by the Union Minister that the Maharashtra government should review its Floor Space Index (“FSI”) policy for Mumbai to encourage and boost affordable housing. If there is a change in the policy, the housing problem of the city could be solved to a great extent. "The state is the responsible authority to do so and it should consider this option," Maken added.
Continuing on the need for infrastructure status for affordable housing, he said, "This can be treated as a sub sector of the realty sector and the sub-sector can be given the infrastructure-status tag."
Every now and then the talk regarding the infrastructure status comes to surface; however, it is not yet converted into reality. It is to be seen that the whether the recent statement made by the housing minister brings about a change.