Government to set up stress fund to revive stuck SRA projects, says Awhad
MUMBAI, July 10, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — The Maharashtra State Housing Ministry today announced a series of relaxations in its slum redevelopment policy to ensure faster availability of housing for slum dwellers in Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR).
Addressing a web press meet on Thursday, Government of Maharashtra’s Housing Minister, Jitendra Awhad has stated that there will be a specific stress fund for stuck SRA projects. While the state government will infuse Rs 700–1,000 crore, the remaining funds requirement will be from SBI. “This stress fund will be used for the completion of stuck projects of SRA,” said Awhad.
“On non-cooperative slum dwellers who stall the projects, the government has ensured that with the help of government machinery under SRA, the authority will ensure slum dwellers vacate the land under development, once the developer has cleared 70% of slums and if facing problem with the remaining non cooperative slum dwellers,” said Awhad.
Under Ease of Doing Business (EODB), the government has even reduced certain procedures. For example a file that would move six tables now will require to go to three officials. Similarly, annexure II, the list with eligible slum dwellers will now be done by SRA. Earlier, it would require three organizations, including BMC, Collectorate and SRA.
The government has also decided the rent to be paid to slum dwellers by developers while carrying out a redevelopment project. In Mumbai up to Bandra, the rent will be Rs 12,000 per month. It will be Rs 10,000 per month from Bandra to Andheri/Ghatkopar and Rs 8,000 per month beyond it. SRA has given out a total of 1856 LOIs to various developers for carrying out rehabilitation projects.
Addressing a web press meet on Thursday, State Housing Minister Mr Jitendra Awhad announced that various premiums related to slum redevelopment projects have been relaxed by way of reductions and deferred payments. Along with the premium relaxations, the approvals timeline has been drastically reduced at all stages by Slum Rehabilitation Authority (SRA), which is the nodal agency under the Housing Ministry to implement the slum redevelopment scheme.
Stating that the relaxation in various SRA premiums and reduction in approval timeline are targeted to achieve a slum-free Mumbai at the earliest, he added that the new premium structure would also ensure clubbing of SRA projects in city zones which were stalled owing to non-feasibility factor.
He further stated that the revised timeline of the approvals structure at various stages including LOI would result in more than 50% reduction in timeline compared to the previous timeline practiced by SRA.
Along with the relaxation in premiums and timeline, all SRA projects would be empowered with health centres; authorized committee to relocate religious structures within the project; online approval (auto DCPR) mechanism like MCGM and committed continuity in construction of rehabilitation buildings which can only be stopped by specific high court orders.
Highlighting the key purpose of the current relaxations in SRA guidelines, Mr Awhad remarked that the latest relaxations is an outcome of series of discussions with all stakeholders, post suggestions and objections, which has been further pushed by the current COVID-19 pandemic environment in MMR.
“The state decision to push SRA development is also keeping in view the city’s readiness to tackle any future pandemics such as COVID-19. As we continue to battle the COVID-19 virus, Mumbai has witnessed an alarming ratio of COVID-19 cases across the slums and a proper housing environment will be the key to safeguard lives and prevent any community spread of such diseases going forward,” he remarked.
The series of measures undertaken by SRA has also capped the rental amount structure, during the rehabilitation phase to Rs 12,000 and Rs 10,000 per month in the city and suburb zones respectively. While for the extended suburbs which come under the MMR region the government has capped rental structure to Rs 8,000 per month
As per prevailing policy, applications for IOA was accepted after issuance of LOI but now it will be approved simultaneously and CC issued within 7 days of the application. And the approval of file will be scrutinised at 3 levels only compared to 6 levels previously.
Earlier, the maintenance deposit of Rs 40,000 per tenant was payable to the extent of 50 per cent at CC stage and balance at rehab OC stage. This has been relaxed to be payable at OC stage of the rehab building .
The on-going construction of rehab buildings in SRA projects will not be issued stop work order except in cases of specific orders from High Court. Earlier, Annexure 3 was required before LOI which is now needed before CC. Whereas project proposals will be accepted in 15 days after relevant NOCs excluding the NOC from the finance department.
About Slum Rehabilitation Authority (SRA)
In the current phase, the Government of Maharashtra has launched a comprehensive slum rehabilitation scheme by introducing an innovative concept of using land·as a resource and allowing incentive floor space index (FSI) in the form of tenements for sale in the open market.
The Government of Maharashtra accepted the recommendations made by the Afzulpurkar Committee, in the December Session of State Legislative Assembly in 1995 and amended the Maharashtra Slum Areas (Improvement, Clearance and Redevelopment) Act, 1971 to provide for the creation of Slum Rehabilitation Authority (SRA) with a Chairperson, a Chief Executive Officer and other members. SRA was created by the Government Notification dated 16th December 1995 to function with effect from 25th December 1995
The Chief Minister of Maharashtra is the Chairperson of SRA and a super time scale IAS Officer is full-time Chief Executive Officer of the Authority. The members include Ministers, elected member of the State Legislature, Secretaries of concern State Government Department and some non-official members.
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