Centre to invest in 7 new bullet train corridors
The Centre is planning to invest Rs 10 trillion in seven new bullet train projects. September 2020
In order to boost the use of modern technology, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has declared April 2019-March 2020 as the year of construction technology. He also stressed on the use of advanced technology to meet the increasing demand of housing in the country caused by rapid urbanisation.
In fact, in the March edition, CW reported on the Global Housing Technology Challenge, under the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana-Urban (PMAY-U), which the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs has launched to meet its target of Housing for All – constructing 1.2 crore affordable houses – by 2022. Evidently, the need is to fast-track construction. In an exclusive interview, Durga Shanker Mishra, Secretary, Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, mentioned, “We are trying to cut construction time with whatever is best available globally; we would like to have it in India.” (Read the complete interview in the CW March 2019 edition)
Inaugurating the Construction Technology India-2019 Expo-cum-conference in New Delhi, Prime Minister Narendra Modi assured that his government has given a major thrust on affordable housing, brought changes in laws governing the real estate sector, while developing skills and improving technology for it. Citing figures, he reportedly stated that the NDA government has built 13 million houses as compared to 2.5 million houses built during the previous dispensation.
Reportedly, he confirmed that the government is ensuring that the houses have water, power and Ujjwala connections (LPG) along with other facilities. The quality of houses and spaces have also reportedly improved in the last four-and-half years but more is to be done, for which Prime Minister Narendra Modi is seeking the support of the private sector.
Considering the challenges in building houses in varied geographical conditions of India and the problems faced by builders and buyers, the government has been reportedly working on a holistic approach. The demand for houses in the country is increasing at a rapid pace ad in order to fulfill this demand using advanced technology in the construction sector, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has reportedly announced April 2019-March 2022 as Construction-Technology year. He has reportedly asked the stakeholders to give the housing sector a new pace by using the latest technologies available in the world. Besides, he assured that the government is keen on engaging with all stakeholders to understand their suggestions and work towards making the housing sector more vibrant.
Stressing on the importance of local innovations in propagating eco-friendly disaster-resilient and energy-efficient constructions, he reportedly stated that the Global Housing Technology Challenge, aimed at introducing best technologies that seek to construct houses in a shorter period of time with lower cost, can help elevate India's construction ecosystem to international standards. Asserting that with the country's fast urbanisation, the need for more houses is being felt, he said to meet the demand and to transform the housing sector, his government has implemented programmes such as Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana, Deen Dayal Antyodaya Yojana, National Urban Livelihoods Mission, HRIDAY, AMRUT and Smart Cities.
In order to provide technical skills to the youth and make changes in engineering and technology curriculum, the government is focusing on systematic reforms. The government is reportedly making it easier for people to buy houses by providing tax benefits and other incentives. According to him, the Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act, (RERA), has improved consumers' confidence in developers and brought transparency in the real estate sector. That said, changes were also made in tax laws so that the middle class can have more money to buy a house. Besides, recently the GST on affordable housing has been reduced from 8 per cent to 1 per cent, while GST on under-construction projects has been reduced from 12 per cent to 5 per cent.