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Poverty Alleviation

The offer for TN short of 2.82 million houses

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The New Indian Express 15.12.2009

The offer for TN short of 2.82 million houses

NEW DELHI: A staggering 2.82 million is the number of houses Tamil Nadu is short of, according a recent report by a committee constituted by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation.

With the country’s population growing rapidly and increasingly drifting towards urban areas – by about 3.8 per cent annually – this urban housing shortage is a matter of great concern.

By the end of the 10th Five Year Plan period, the total housing shortage in the country will stand at 24.71 million, the committee estimated.

Maharashtra tops the list with a shortage of 3.72 million houses.

The committee found that shortage of housing was highest for economically weaker sections (those with an income of up to Rs 3,300 per month.)Their shortage was 21.78 million houses. Low income groups (between Rs 3,300 and Rs 7,300 per month) fare a little better with a housing shortage of 2.89 million while for middle and high income groups the shortage was 0.04 million houses.

The committee reported that the government envisaged a requirement of an additional 1.82 million dwellings for the 11th Five Year Plan period. Since land and colonisation are state subjects, it was primarily the responsibility of state governments to provide adequate shelter both for residents as well as migrants, the report added.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 15 December 2009 10:36

Affordable housing for urban poor

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The Hindu 18.11.2009

Affordable housing for urban poor

Special Correspondent

TIRUCHI: Tamil Nadu Housing Board, the nodal agency for implementing the Centrally-sponsored affordable housing scheme for the urban poor, will prepare an action plan for each district.

The objective would be to provide stimulus to economic activities through affordable housing programmes under public-private partnership mode. The partnership aims at operationalising the strategy envisaged in the National Urban Housing and Habitat Policy. As per the guidelines issued by the Union Ministry of Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation, partnerships with the private sector, cooperative sector, financial services sector and urban local bodies could be taken up for realising the goal of affordable housing for all.

The scheme, a part of the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission, intends to provide a major stimulus to economic activities through affordable housing for creation of employment, especially for the construction workers and other urban poor.

The scheme is primarily applicable to the 65 cities covered under the Basic Services to the Urban Poor (BSUP) programme and cities with a population above five lakh could also be considered with the approval of the National Steering Group of the JNNURM.

Beneficiaries under the scheme should be groups of dwellings with a mix from the economically weaker section (EWS), low income group (LIG) and middle income group (MIG) categories. The minimum carpet area of the houses building for the EWS category should be 25 square metres and maximum for MIG category should be 80 square metres. Beneficiaries under the EWS/LIG categories can be provided credit linkages and extended five per cent interest subsidy of 5 per cent on loans up to Rs.1 lakh.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 18 November 2009 02:13

No schooling for children of migrant labourers

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The New Indian Express 09.11.2009

No schooling for children of migrant labourers

Children of migrant workers from Andhra Pradesh and Orissa left behind to guard the tin-roof huts while their parents toil. (Express photo)
CHENNAI: It should be the worst urban parody: Children of those building skyscrapers have no school to go. About 6,000 families of migrant construction workers who have made the suburbs of Chennai their home for the past seven to eight years leave their children behind to guard the tin-roof huts, fetch water for the household and baby-sit on younger sibling. While they toil to make the city’s skyline look better.

Having migrated from drought-hit hinterlands of Andhra Pradesh and Orissa in search of greener pastures in the metropolis, they do not see any upward social mobility for their children as there are no schools with Telugu or Oriya medium instruction around their settlements in Kattankulathur block in Kancheepuram district.

Besides, the parents themselves are alien to the concept of formal education. As a result, about 1,300 children in the age group of six to 14 have never stepped inside a classroom, according to a study conducted by Rural Development Trust (RDT), an NGO working among those migrant labourers.

Mohan, who supervisors a non-formal educational centre run by RDT, said, “Once old enough, the children join the workforce along with their parents.”

T K Elumalai of RDT said, “The only way to keep the children out of labour is to keep them in school. Language is a huge barrier for them as they have to enrol in Tamil medium schools.”

Responding to lack of schools for the children, V Saraswati, Chief Educational Officer (CEO) of Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) Scheme in Kancheepuram district, said, “We will soon bring these children under the SSA scheme, to give them some informal education and employ Telugu-knowing teachers to run a bridge course of six months.”

Mohana Kumar, CEO of Kancheepuram district told Express: “This is the first time I have heard about this. Since it has been brought to my attention, I will represent the matter to the district collector and do the needful to start a Telugu medium school for these children.”

Last Updated on Monday, 09 November 2009 10:22

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