Union Minister for Housing and Urban Affairs, Hardeep Singh Puri reviewed the progress of five flagship schemes of Housing and Urban Affairs Ministry for eight northeastern States at Prajnja Bhavan here on Saturday and said before October 2, 2019 all the Northeastern States will be open defection free (ODF).
Tripura Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb, Secretary of Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs Durga Shankar and representatives of all NE States remained present in the review meeting.
During the two-days meeting, the implementation of PMAY for the urban segment, Atal Mission for Rejuvenation for Urban Transformation, Smart City Mission, Swatch Bharat Mission (Urban), Northeast Urban Development Program, Deendayal Antodaya Yojana National Urban Livelihood Mission were discussed.
After the meeting, the Union Minister appreciated the progress of five flagship schemes in all the northeastern States.
Speaking to reporters, Union Minister Puri said, “There have been very encouraging developments and I find all the States of the northeastern region are not only coming to terms with the implementation of the schemes but in some areas, we have excellent results. Nagaland was declared ODF as of yesterday. Out of the eight States, four are ODF already and three others will be ODF by December 31, 2018 and one of the States will be by January 2019. It is good that eight to nine months before the schedule that is October 2, 2019 all the Northeastern States will be ODF.”
According to the Minister, ODF cannot be total with just meeting the physical targets of construction of individual household toilets, or community and public toilets but until there are behavioural changes ODF scheme cannot be completed.
Puri said, “In Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana I can tell you that Tripura has done excellent work in Prime Minister Awas Yojana (PMAY-U) and we have sanctioned all demands for houses under PMAY in Tripura.”
The Minister said, “In the PMAY (implementation in NE region) in terms of overall figures between the years 2005 and 2014 which is the 10 years of the previous UPA dispensation the Central Government had sanctioned a total number of 26,041 houses and central assistance was Rupees 684 crores. Now 26,000 houses in 10 years period and in our four years plus (NDA 2 government period) this is now 2.30 lakh and the central assistance is Rs 3570 crores in these 4 years. In the Northeast, the maximum houses have been sanctioned in Tripura with 79,988 houses of which 60 percent has already been grounded.”
He praised Tripura for its outstanding performance in the construction of houses under the PMAY.
Puri said, “Out of the 2.30 lakh houses in the NE region overall 1.16 lakh houses have been grounded, construction of 17,403 have been completed and Tripura has grounded the maximum houses which is 63,723 houses and of these 15,717 have been completed. Tripura is followed by Assam which has 27180 house been grounded.”
According to the Minister under the previous political dispensation JNNURM scheme which had ended on March 31 of 2017, 4874 houses are still under-construction and some 2619 of the constructed homes are still lying vacant.
In presence of the Union Minister and Tripura Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb, seven northeastern cities signed MoU for integrated command and control centers under the Smart City project.
Regarding Smart City project, Puri said Sikkim made significant progress and others need to expedite the ambitious plan even it is a new concept.
On the day the second phase of housing scheme for urban poor under the 10% Lumpsum Scheme of MoHUA, a Shelter House for Urban Homeless under DAY-NULM was inaugurated beside declaring Tripura as the first NE state and the 10th in the country where building rules will be applied online through a single window and shall be sanctioned within one month.
Meanwhile, the Tripura CM requested the Union Minister to ensure the funding pattern of the flagship schemes at the ration of 90:10 between the center and the state respectively.