Provide affordable housing solutions to poor- Chopra

| | Dehradun
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Provide affordable housing solutions to poor- Chopra

Sunday, 08 May 2022 | PNS | Dehradun

The former Director of Lal Bahadur Shastri National Academy of Administration (LBSNAA), Sanjeev Chopra has said that there is a need to provide affordable housing solutions, especially to the economically weaker sections of the society.

He was speaking at a dialogue on ‘Affordable Housing in Uttarakhand: Challenges and Opportunities’ in Dehradun. The programme was organised under joint aegis of Housing and Urban Development Corporation (HUDCO) limited, Social Development for Communities (SDC) Foundation and PHD Chamber of Commerce.

Elaborating on the shortcomings of the housing loans offered by the prominent banks in the country, Chopra said that they only cater to the middle and higher income groups. These banks deny loans to the lower income groups, citing unemployment and income tax returns as the reasons behind their policy. He suggested that alternate strategies such as allotment of affordable housing on the basis of Equated Monthly Instalment (EMI) could be worth exploring. 

The Regional Chief of HUDCO, Sanjay Bhargava emphasized on the need to rehabilitate the inhabitants of the illegal squatter settlements that have mushroomed all across the state, within close proximity of their source of employment. He shed light on the Indian government’s welfare schemes and policies in the past 50 years and the reasons which lead to their failure. 

The Head of Architecture and Planning, Central Building Research Institute (CBRI) Roorkee, Ashok Kumar highlighted the need to monitor land acquisition and sales strictly on the basis of circle rates, a gray area which has been severely exploited by the local land mafia, resulting in sky-rocketing land prices. He also gave an account of the failure of government housing schemes.

The Chairman of PHD Chamber of Commerce-Uttarakhand Chapter, Hemant Kochar expressed concern on the spurt in high-rise buildings and unchecked urban sprawl in the vulnerable and ecologically sensitive Himalayan region and the challenges that await the building institutions and city planners in the future.

Naresh Mathpal, member RERA, shed light on the ongoing government welfare schemes, policies and their ground realities.

The founder of SDC Foundation, Anoop Nautiyal said that the  the housing challenges that Uttarakhand faces is further aggravated by an ever-increasing population and the constant influx of people into the plains from the hills in search of better employment opportunities, thus putting excessive pressure on the already saturated urban centres of the state. He said that Public-Private partnerships and interdisciplinary collaborations hold key to providing affordable housing solutions in Uttarakhand in the near future.

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