Can Housing for All by 2022 Become a Reality?
Among the many flagship initiatives taken over the last few years, ‘Housing for All by 2022’ was one of the most ambitious schemes. To achieve this mission, in 2015, the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (PMAY) scheme was launched.
The scheme held much promise and hope with its aim of building over 50 million houses by 2022, of which 30 million units were proposed to be constructed in the rural areas (through PMAY-Rural) and 20 million in the urban areas (through PMAY-Urban). However, the government scaled these numbers down to 21.4 million under PMAY-R and 11.2 million units under PMAY-U by 2022.
With the deadline for Housing for All by 2022 approaching fast, the task ahead seems daunting yet doable with substantial government push.
PMAY (U): Where do we stand?
As of June 25, 2021, 112.95 Lakh homes have been sanctioned in the country. Out of these 112.95 Lakh homes, approximately 50.04 Lakh homes are completed, while another 83.25 Lakh homes have been grounded for construction.
- In terms of completion, out of the total houses completed, Uttar Pradesh is the showstopper with over 8.62 Lakh homes already completed. However, it must be noted that the total sanctioned homes in the state is about 17.26 Lakh.
- Uttar Pradesh is followed by Gujarat and Maharashtra with 5.71 Lakh and 4.86 Lakh homes, respectively.
- Here, it must also be noted that Andhra Pradesh has the highest number of homes sanctioned with 20.36 Lakh, followed by Uttar Pradesh with 17.26 Lakh, and Maharashtra with 13.13 Lakh homes.
“With 1.5 years to go, against the revised targets, 19.55 million houses have been sanctioned, and 14.16 million have been completed through PMAY-Rural till April 2021, implying completion of 67% of the revised target and 72% of the sanctioned houses. Further, 9% of the houses have not been sanctioned so far. While under the PMAY-U, against a revised target of 11.2 million units, almost entire 11.2 million housing units have been sanctioned and 4.8 million houses have been completed, leading to the completion of only 43% of the near-term target as well as the sanctioned units under the PMAY-U,” explains Kapil Banga, Assistant Vice-President and Sector Head, ICRA.
The performance is also likely to get impacted in FY2022 on account of Covid-19. Thus, a significant pick-up in the implementation pace for both, the PMAY-U and the PMAY-R, will be required to achieve the Housing for All target by 2022.
In terms of funding, the allocation towards the PMAY-U in the Union Budget has been reduced to Rs 8,000 Crore for FY2022, against a revised estimate (RE) of Rs 21,000 Crore for FY2021 and the same has remained stagnant when compared to the budget estimate (BE) of Rs 8,000 Crore for FY2021.
According to a recent press release by ICRA titled Steep climb ahead to achieve the target of Housing for all by 2022, the allocation towards the PMAY-R in the Union Budget has remained at Rs 21,000 Crore for FY2022, the same as the revised estimate (RE) and the budget estimate (BE) for FY2021. Though the extra-budgetary resources (EBR) for PMAY-R have been increased from Rs 10,000 Crore to Rs 20,000 Crore in BE of FY2022 against Rs 10,000 Crore in FY2021; the EBR for PMAY-U for FY2022 is nil, against Rs 10,000 Crore in BE of FY2021.
What can the government do?
Although the Cabinet had approved a Rs 60,000 Crore dedicated affordable housing fund – the National Urban Housing Fund – in 2018 to support the PMAY programme implementation, a considerable portion of the same has already been utilised, raising the need for more allocation.
“In the absence of a substantial ramp-up in budgetary allocation, the execution could continue to lag, while the dependence on extra-budgetary resources is likely to remain elevated. Thus, the ability to provide the required EBR to plug the gap would be critical to meet the financial spending and consequently the physical completion targets within the stated timeline,” concludes Kapil.