Budget 2018: FM Lends Support To Affordable-Housing Buyers, Announces Dedicated Fund
The Housing and Urban Affairs Ministry had sought for a larger share of the Budget allocations to promote the time-bound projects – the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (Urban) and Smart City Mission. Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, putting a special focus on the aim to provide housing for all by 2022, has announced special measures in the Budget 2018-19.
A special thrust to affordable housing
Affordable housing, one of the prime projects aimed at providing housing for all by 2022, has been given a special thrust in the Budget 2018-19. The FM has announced that the government will establish a dedicated Affordable Housing Fund in the National Housing Bank. This will be funded by the priority sector lending shortfall and fully serviced bonds authorised by the government. This fund will help support affordable-housing buyers. The government plans to construct over 31 lakh homes in urban areas in 2018-2019 and 51 lakh in rural areas.
The rise of smart cities
The FM in his Budget Speech, laid special emphasis on smart cities. He said that he was happy to inform that of the 100 smart cities to be built under the Smart City Mission, 99 cities have been selected with an outlay of Rs 2.04 lakh crore. The cities, according to Jaitley, have started implementing various projects such as smart command and control centres, smart roads, solar rooftops, intelligent transport systems, smart parks. So far, smart projects worth Rs 2,350 crore have been completed while Rs 20,852-crore worth of projects is under progress.
What's in for housing ministry?
The Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs Ministry has been given a budget estimate of Rs 21,424 crore under Gross Budgetary Support (GBS) while Rs 39,937 will be provided under Internal & Extra Budgetary Resources (IERB). Of the total IERB, Rs 25,000 has been earmarked for the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (Urban). The housing ministry had sought an allocation of Rs 20,000 for this scheme.