Mumbai: Government to cap house allotment

Mumbai: The Maharashtra Government working on a policy to cap allotment of houses under ‘one state one house policy’. A proposal will soon be tabled in the Cabinet meeting for discussion.

However, whether the policy will be applicable to all general public or only to government employees is yet to be decided, said sources. Currently, the state housing department is conducting a viability study to understand the implications the policy might have on its introduction.

Interestingly, if the policy comes into force, the Maharashtra Housing and Area Development Authority (MHADA), which provides affordable homes in Mumbai and other cities under the economically-weaker section and lower, middle and higher-income groups, will reject applications which already have a house under any government scheme anywhere in the state.

Welcoming the government plan, Mumbai board, MHADA chairman, Madhu Chavan said, “The authority aims to provide affordable houses to those who don’t have any.

As no such policy is in place, a homebuyer who already has a house in Pune, for instance, applies for another house in Mumbai under a government scheme due to low-cost.

It results in several ill-fated real homebuyers missing the opportunity. If it continues, housing for all will never be achieved. Therefore, a policy to cap allotment of houses is needed.”

An official said the decision to introduce ‘one state one house’ policy follows the Bombay High Court order on May 4, 2018. The division bench of Justices Bhushan Gavai and Bharati Dangre had said an individual should not get another flat if he already has one under a government scheme.

The ruling was made while hearing the public interest litigation by activist Ketan Tirodkar, questioning the state government’s decision to construct a high-rise residential building in suburban Oshiwara for sitting high court judges.

Wherein, Ashutosh Kumbhkoni, the state’s advocate general told the court the government was already planning to come up with such a policy. Interestingly, every year, the MHADA calls for a lottery of affordable houses.

Notably, due to a huge demand for houses under government schemes, the MHADA receives thousands of applications. In April 2019, for 217 houses, the MHADA received more than 46,000 applications. Similarly, in 2018, the MHADA had received 1.64 lakh applications for 1,384 housing units.

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