THE CENTRE has turned down the Uttar Pradesh (UP) government’s request for approval of houses for 13 lakh additional “eligible beneficiaries” under the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana-Gramin (PMAY-G).
In a letter to Union Rural Development Minister Giriraj Singh in April this year, UP Deputy Chief Minister Keshav Prasad Maurya had urged the Centre to approve 13 lakh houses under the PMAY-G in 2022-23, in addition to the 11.66 lakh houses approved as per the “Awaas+” list in 2020-21 and 2021-22.
However, in his response sent in May, Singh told Maurya that UP has already been given the “full and final” allocation of 11.66 lakh houses as per the recommendations of the expert committee.
The Centre had launched the PMAY-G in 2016 with the aim to provide houses to all in rural areas by 2022 (the scheme was later extended till 2024), and set a target of construction of 2.95 crore houses. While 2.15 crore beneficiaries were identified using specified parameters, from the database of the Socio Economic and Caste Census (SECC) 2011, the remaining 80 lakh beneficiaries were identified by the Union Ministry of Rural Development (MoRD), through the states and Union territories, via a survey using ‘Awaas+’ – a mobile application designed for conducting surveys of households who were not covered in the SECC 2011.
According to MoRD sources, 14.49 lakh households in UP were found eligible as per the SECC parameters after verification. The UP government found another 32.86 lakh beneficiaries eligible after verifying their details uploaded in the ‘Awaas+’ survey. But the Centre has said that the expert committee constituted for analysing the ‘Awaas+’ data found only 11.66 lakh eligible.
While the difference between the number of households found eligible by the state government on the basis of the ‘Awaas+’ data and the houses approved by the Centre is higher, the state is pushing for 13 lakh additional houses.
According to the ministry’s data, as on August 17 this year, the Centre had set a target of 26.15 lakh houses (14.49 lakh from SECC data; 11.66 lakh from ‘Awaas+’ survey) in UP under PMAY-G, of which 25.79 lakh houses have been completed.
But, seeking additional houses under the scheme, Maurya, in his letter to Singh on April 7, said: “Under the PMAY-G, houses have been provided to 14.49 lakh beneficiaries who were found eligible as per the list of SECC 2011. Besides, out of 11.66 lakh houses approved as per the ‘Awaas+’ list, 10.78 lakh beneficiaries’ houses have been completed and the remaining houses would be completed till April 2022. There are still 13 lakh eligible beneficiaries as per the Awaas+ list, for which houses have to be approved,”
Maurya said that of the 80 lakh houses to be constructed across the country as per the Awaas+ list, the Centre has allocated 11.66 lakh houses to UP for 2020-21 and 2021-22. “Thereafter, no more houses are to be allocated to the state,” he wrote, adding that UP would then not get any housing target under PMAY-G in 2022-23, although 13 lakh beneficiaries were yet to be covered.
In his reply dated May 27, Rural Development Giriraj Singh wrote: “In this matter, I would like to inform you that to achieve the ‘housing for all’ goal, a total target of construction of 2.95 crore houses has been set under the PMAY-G… As per the SECC 2011, there are (about) 2.15 crore eligible beneficiaries and to fill the remaining gap of 80 lakh, the ‘Awaas+’ list is being used. It is also noteworthy that as per the recommendations of the expert committee constituted for analysing the ‘Awaas+’ data, a target of 63.68 lakh houses has been allocated to states and UTs, which includes full and final allocation of 11,66,127 houses to Uttar Pradesh.”
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“Therefore, as per the recommendations of the expert committee, the full permissible target has been allocated to Uttar Pradesh,” Singh wrote.
As per the recommendation of the expert panel, UP got the full allocation under Awaas+ last year itself; so “no fresh allocation” has been made this year, said ministry sources.
Earlier, UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath had also written to then Rural Development Minister Narendra Singh Tomar, seeking allocation of 25.54 lakh houses to the state as per the Awaas+ list for 2021-22. This demand was also raised by UP Rural Development Minister Rajendra Pratap Singh in a letter to Tomar on February 2, 2021.