The state government has ordered demolition of 120 houses in Rampur,constructed for the poor under the Centre-sponsored Integrated Housing and Slum Development Programme (IHSDP),citing use of sub-standard construction materials.
State Urban Development Agency (SUDA) Director Shivshankar Singh,who issued the order after an inspection last month,has asked the state-owned UP Rajkiya Nirman Nigam (UPRNN),which built the houses,to take action against those responsible and re-construct the houses at its own expense.
Singh said he had received complaints of sub-standard construction in three cities Rampur,Agra and Kanpur. Rampur is the hometown of Urban Development Minister Azam Khan.
I found that yellow bricks of the cheapest quality had been used. The quality of cement was not good,and too much sand was used, Singh added.
He said he would conduct an inspection of the houses in Agra and Kanpur soon. After getting SUDAs report,the UPRNN sent its official for an inspection. However,his findings were at variance with SUDAs report. He reported that the quality of construction was not so bad. The bricks used were yellow,but of good quality. The cement was also of standard quality, said his report,according to a source.
The UPRNN has now decided to send samples of the construction materials to the laboratory for tests.
An inquiry is being conducted,and necessary action will be taken soon, said UPRNN managing director A K Gupta.
Under the IHSDP,a part of the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission,houses are provided to those living in slums. The Centre provides 80 per cent of the cost,while the state and the beneficiary pay 10 per cent each. The cost of each dwelling unit is Rs 1.65 lakh.
Construction of around 97,000 houses was started in 140 towns of UP in 2007. So far,around 42,000 houses have been built. The total cost of the IHSDP in UP is around Rs 1,616 crore and the Centre has so far provided 60 per cent of its share.