New Delhi, November 16: The shortage is likely to be around or in excess of 10 million units which is aimed to be addressed through the flagship programme ‘PMAY’ (Pradhan MantriAwasYojana) Urban, of the Government of India. This was said by Housing and Urban Affairs Minister Hardeep Puri while addressing the RICS Real Estate Conference on “policy, reform and regulation: the backbone of Indian Real Estate” in New Delhi on Wednesday.
Minister Hardeep Puri also stated that the Real Estate Act is a pioneering legislation which will have a long-term transformative effect. “We have put in place an eco-system to ensure that real estate sector is properly governed and buyers are empowered. I have absolutely no doubt that the history of Real Estate in India will be written in two segments, pre and post RERA,” he said.
The pre-RERA phase was characterized by the dreams and ambitions to own a house of many being dashed for a considerable period of time by a few persons exploiting that dream. We are not out of that phase yet,” the Housing and Urban Affairs Minister added.
Addressing the participants, Puri also observed that the lack of finances was only part of a problem for owning a house. There was very little transparency in the housing sector. Broken promises, incomplete housing projects tell a tragic tale of untold misery inflicted on hapless citizens who, in many instances, had pledged their life savings and even the family silver just to own a house. “We are still witnessing the final phase of a cleaning up process involving the misdemeanours of a few who tarnished the image of the many developers who were genuine in their dealings,” he further said.
Referring to a technical study conducted in 2011 which placed the housing shortage at 18.76 million in urban areas, of which 96% is in the EWS segment and in LIG Housing, the Minister said that subsequent assessments led to a revision of this figure and in the final analysis, the shortage is likely to be around or in excess of 10 million units which is aimed to be addressed through the flagship programme ‘PMAY’ (Pradhan MantriAwasYojana) Urban, of the Government of India.
Stressing the importance of the Housing Sector, the Minister said that it plays a catalytic role in fulfilling the demand for housing and infrastructure in the country and is the second largest sector after agriculture providing employment to 6.86% of the workforce in the country. “While the sector has grown significantly in recent years, it has largely been unregulated, with the absence of professionalism and standardization, and lack of adequate consumer protection,” he noted.
Referring to RERA, the Minister observed that the Act itself is a response to the dire need of Indian consumers and in a discharge of the sovereign functions towards public interest. The Act upholds the spirit of federalism by allowing the States to set up the Regulatory Authority and the Appellate Tribunal, and the role of the Central Government is limited to Union Territories without a legislature. The Act is aimed at consumer protection, by creating an online system for information sharing so that there is mutual trust between the developer and the buyers, and projects are implemented in time.