[Answered] Analyze the challenges in the implementation of the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana, both in urban and rural contexts. What are the major hurdles in achieving the set targets, and how do these affect the overall success of the housing policies?

Introduction: Give a brief context to the question

Body: Highlight the hurdles in achieving the targets of PMAY

Conclusion: Way forward

The Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (PMAY), a flagship initiative by the Indian government, aims to ensure “Housing for All” by 2024. The two wings under these are Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (Gramin) and Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (Urban).

Urban Hurdles

  • Land Scarcity and High Costs: One of the biggest challenges in urban areas is the limited availability of land, particularly in metros and major cities.
  • Complex Approval Processes: Lengthy and bureaucratic approval processes for land acquisition, building plans, and clearances can significantly delay project initiation.
  • Poor Property Records and Beneficiary Identification: Many potential beneficiaries, especially slum dwellers and those residing in informal settlements, lack proper documentation of land ownership

Rural Hurdles

  • Geographical Accessibility: Rural areas often face challenges related to geographical remoteness and lack of connectivity, making it difficult to access construction materials, skilled labor, and project sites.
  • Lack of Awareness and Documentation: Many potential beneficiaries in rural areas are unaware of PMAY or lack the necessary documentation to avail of its benefits. Illiteracy, lack of awareness campaigns, and cumbersome documentation requirements act as barriers to accessing housing subsidies and loans.

Impact on Overall Success of Housing Policies

  • Delay in achieving targets: Delays in project completion and beneficiary identification lead to a significant gap between the set targets and the actual number of houses built. The PMAY-U promised houses for 1.18 crore families by December 2024. As of March 2024, it has only achieved around 67% of its target, that is, around 80 lakh.
  • Increase cost of housing: Ignoring these obstacles may result in construction that is of poor quality, delays, overspending, and the exclusion of underprivileged people from receiving housing benefits. This furthers the cycle of poverty and homelessness by undermining the government’s objective of offering all residents decent, affordable homes.

Conclusion

A right to housing has been held to be a part of the fundamental right to life under Article 21 of the Constitution by the Supreme Court. By addressing these challenges and implementing effective solutions, the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana can truly fulfill its promise of providing “Housing for All” and create a significant impact on the lives of millions of Indians.

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