In a move that is bound to give a boost to the cause of affordable housing, the Haryana state cabinet has removed the cap on land for affordable housing. The latest amendment in the Affordable Housing Policy 2013 stipulates 15 acres of land in every sector to be earmarked for affordable housing projects across the state. Thus, the earlier cap of 10 acres per sector, 300 acres in total has been done away with in Gurugram.
The abovesaid amendment was passed by the cabinet some two weeks ago, though a formal notification in this regard is yet to be issued. Senior DTCP officials confirmed the development and said the notification is expected to be issued sometime this week.
“We’ve removed the 300 acre-cap in Gurugram and made it 15 acres per sector across the state,” said a senior DTCP official. Developers in Gurugram have long been asking for increase in land for affordable housing, on account of a huge ‘demand and supply mismatch’.
The official further said as of now, another 5 acres can be allotted in 70 sectors of Gurugram. It’s likely that in the next two years, developers will apply for 100-120 acres, and that the total land available for such projects could eventually “easily cross 500 acres” in Gurugram. “If we get more applications than available land, we will decide with the help of lottery system,” said the official. Developers have hailed the state government’s decision and said the move is more than what they had expected, and that it would help in realising Prime Minister’s dream of ‘housing for all by 2020’.
“The state government’s announcement has come as a big relief to the industry, which had long been demanding a raise in land allotted for this segment, especially in Gurugram. There is huge demand for affordable housing in this region due to employment opportunities,” said Pradeep Agarwal, chairman, Signature Global, which has several affordable housing projects in the city.
Currently, work is in progress on the development of some 35,000 units in Gurugram. Another 24,000 could come up if licences are cleared in a time-bound manner. However, developers added the government should now focus on timely allotment of licences.
In the same amendment, the state government has also made the way for setting up of a single-window clearance system for the industry to improve ease of doing business, which, when initiated, will involve a yet-to-be-set-up nodal agency to deal with all issues and challenges faced by the real estate sector.