4.5 million houses constructed for poor: minister

March 12th, 2008 - 11:26 pm ICT by admin  

A file-photo of P. Chidambaram

New Delhi, March 12 (IANS) The government Wednesday told parliament that 4,571,595 houses were constructed in the period 2004-07 for people living below poverty line (BPL) under the Indira Awas Yojana (IAY) in rural areas. Minister of State for Rural Development Suryakanta Patil in a written reply in the Rajya Sabha said the construction of houses for the poor during the period was higher than the target set of 4,537,095 units.

According to official estimate, the total housing shortage in the rural areas was estimated at 14,833,000 as of April 1, 2001.

In 2006-07, 1,498,367 houses were constructed under the IAY in 33 states and union territories. Under the scheme, the prospective beneficiaries are given subsidy to construct houses.

Keeping in view the increasing building cost, Finance Minister P. Chidambaram in 2008-09 national budget has proposed to enhance the subsidy per unit for new houses sanctioned after April 1, 2008 from Rs.25,000 to Rs.35,000 in plain areas and Rs.27,500 to Rs.38,500 in hilly areas.

The IAY is a part of the government’s Bharat Nirman programme aimed at upgrading basic infrastructure facilities in the rural areas.

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