Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley advised Chandigarh councillors who called on him Monday to rope in private developers to build one room sets for slum-dwellers in the city’s unauthorised colonies.
City councillors, who had gone to witness Parliament, met Jaitley Monday evening along with Member of Parliament Kirron Kher and BJP leaders Sanjay Tandon and Satya Pal Jain.
Jaitley suggested that the councillors visit Mumbai to study the slum rehabilitation model in which the land is handed over to private developers in return for construction of the housing units.
“He suggested that this project will provide shelter to slum-dwellers and would keep up the beauty of City Beautiful’, too. He said we people can see such similar projects that are developed in Mumbai. Under this model, the government need not pay anything and because the land is given to a private developer, he develops towers of one or two room sets. In return, he gets part of the land and rights for his own construction,”said a BJP councillor.
Congress councillor Devinder Singh Babla, who was present there, submitted before the Finance Minister that in Chandigarh, slum-dwellers were sitting on government land and how could they give government land to the private builders.
“I had put forth that Maharashtra and Chandigarh are totally different. In Maharashtra, slum-dwellers are on private land as well. Here, the colonies are on government land and giving it to private developers will make it a mess. But he insisted that we should go and see it how Maharashtra has come up with the rehousing for slums,” said Babla.
The Government of Maharashtra had brought an amendment to the Maharashtra Regional and Town Planning Act 56 and introduced a nodal agency Slum Rehabilitation Authority. The SRA enables property developers to rehabilitate slum-dwellers and compensates the landowner and developer by awarding them with the Transferable Development Rights (TDR).
BJP Mayor Asha Jaswal told Chandigarh Newsline that they would now carry out a survey of all the colonies. “Our study tour to Mumbai that is being planned,” said Jaiswal.
Sources said MP Kirron Kher and Mayor Asha Jaswal requested if they could get additional funds for the MC. However, Jaitley specifically told them that MC would have to generate its own funds, the sources said.