In a bid to eradicate slums from the city,the state government has set up a core committee to prepare a concept plan for providing cheap housing in the region. The concept plan,a longterm initiative,will aim at building more affordable houses and houses on moderate rents.
According to UPS Madan,project director,Mumbai Transform Support Unit (MTSU),and member of the committee,the idea is to provide decent living to the people living in slums. Our idea is to cover maximum slum-dwellers by providing decent living through various schemes, Madan said.
The committee,which is led by Metropolitan Commissioner Ratnakar Gaikwad,comprises Municipal Commissioner Jairaj Phatak,urban development secretaries T C Benjamin and Manu Kumar Srivastava,former municipal commissioner D M Sukhtankar and Chairman of Bombay First Narinder Nayar.
The committee is looking at a plan for next 30 years. It hopes that the plan will tackle the issue of emergence of slums in the city. There are means to provide adequate housing to people in the city through slum rehabilitation schemes,rental housing scheme and affordable housing schemes, Madan said. The Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) has already initiated the rental housing scheme to arrest the number of sprouting shanties in the city. In this scheme,the MMRDA plans to construct five lakh houses in the MMR and they would be rented out for low rents.
Though,this concept plan does not guarantee a slum-free Mumbai,it would rehabilitate most of the people living in slums. It is not a 100 per cent slum-free plan. If slums can be upgraded,people can continue to live there without being shifted. People in some areas,where development is not possible due to legal problems,have to be shifted and rehabilitated due to dangerous living condition, Madan added.