Stating that the state government would not seek contribution from the poor while building houses for them, Chief Minister Vijay Rupani on Thursday handed over cheques of refunds to beneficiaries of Kitipara slum rehabilitation project that falls under his Rajkot (West) Assembly constituency. He also gave away land titles to 287 residents of Amarjitnagar who had been rehabilitated on a plot owned by Rajkot Municipal Corporation (RMC) more than 20 years ago, but had not been given land rights.
At an event here, Rs 23.60 lakh was returned to 242 beneficiaries of Kitipara slum rehabilitation project after the state government decided to make the contribution on their behalf through money allotted in Pandit Deendayal Upadhyay Awas Yojana (PDUAY).
In 2014, the RMC demolished slums in Kitipara after deciding to redevelop it in-situ under the Rajiv Awaas Yojana (RAY). The RMC constructed 304 1BHK houses at a cost of Rs 14 crore. Under the RAY, which has since been discontinued, the Centre used to bear 50 per cent of the cost of a dwelling unit, with the state government bearing 25 per cent of the cost. The local urban body had to provide additional 15 per cent and beneficiary had to contribute the balance 10 per cent. In Kitipara, the beneficiary contribution worked out to Rs 50,000 per flat.
“I had visited huts when the area was a slum… Today, those shanties have been replaced by pucca houses. They had to make Rs 50,000 contribution for each house. But the state government has decided not to seek contribution from the poor. Instead, the government will make the contribution on their behalf,” the CM told his constituents.
Handing over land titles to 287 residents of Amarjitnagar, Rupani said, “The residents can now be able to develop their homes, avail loans etc. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has launched Pradhan Mantri Aawas Yojana for the poor. It is a dream of PM Modi to provide houses to all the citizens by 2022 when we shall be celebrating 75 years of our Independence.”
Amarjitnagar residents were displaced after their houses at Bavaliyapara, Hinglajnagar and Chhotunagar were demolished as part of a drive to clear encroachment and widen city roads. The RMC had rehabilitated them by allotting them land plots, measuring between 25 and 40 square yards, on Airport Road in 1994. But they had not been given land titles.