MHADA has no homes for poor

Figures for 2012 housing lottery has no homes for the economically weaker sections in city; sources say authority doesn't have land to build low-cost houses

At a time when the authorities' onus should be to facilitate better housing for the weaker sections of the society, Maharashtra Housing and Area Development Authority (MHADA) is doing just the contrary. Known for providing affordable houses in the city, MHADA has announced that there will be no homes in the city for the economically weaker sections' (EWS) applicants in this year's lottery.

Realty bites: The lottery would be conducted for 2,786 houses of which
only 876 houses are in the city while the remaining 1,919 are in Mira
Road-Bhayandar. File pic

Out of the 867 affordable flats that will be made available to the general public in the city, the lower income groups (LIG) would be having a maximum of 461 houses. 234 houses for the middle-income group (MIG) will be made available, while the higher income group (HIG) would have a total of 172 houses. 

"Around 867 houses in Mumbai will be released in the MHADA 2012 lottery, and this is the lowest figure in the lottery in the last five years," said a MHADA official, on condition of anonymity. This means the EWS category's applicants have a reduced chance of securing a home in the lottery. 

Sources in MHADA informed that the reason behind the less number of EWS houses is because the land bank of MHADA is shrinking, and there is very less land which MHADA has in Mumbai. It should also be noted that for the first time in its history, the Mumbai Board and Konkan Board of MHADA would be jointly conducting a lottery in the month of May this year. A total of 1,919 flats in EWS category will be released via the Konkan Board in Mira Road and Bhayandar.

So the only option for the EWS category applicants will be to apply for houses in Mira Road and Bhayandar, which is under the jurisdiction of the Konkan Board of MHADA. When questioned what will be the exact number of houses that will be released jointly by Mumbai and Konkan board in its 2012 lottery, the official said, "We have not finalised the exact number of houses, as the construction of houses is still in progress."

Moreover, various officials in MHADA have announced different figures (between 3,500-5,000 houses) about the houses that will be released in the 2012 MHADA lottery. In March this year, MHADA vice-president Satish Gavai had said that around 5,000 houses would be released. However, sources in MHADA stated that it is not possible to release 5,000 houses in the upcoming lottery as most of the houses are still under construction and will only be ready by 2013." The Mumbai board in the last three years had provided around 11,500 affordable houses through lottery (3,863 in 2009, 3,449 in 2010 and 4,034 in 2011).

Dream home
Categories based on yearly income and flat area:
EWS: Up to 1.44 lakh pa
Area: 225 sq ft

LIG: Up to 2.44 lakh pa
Area: 300 sq ft

MIG: Up to 3 lakh pa
Area: 400-750 sq ft

HIG: Over 3 lakh pa 
Area: 750 sq ft

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