3-year agenda unveiled by the Niti Ayog envisages more skyscrapers, flexible land-conversion rules, increased availability of affordable housing
3-year agenda unveiled by the Niti Ayog envisages more skyscrapers, flexible land-conversion rules and increased availability of affordable housing.
Lower land prices by way of reduced stamp duty, according to the think tank, would not only check the flow of black money into real estate but also make housing more affordable for low-income families. “Only a handful of states have lowered stamp duty so far. The results will show when low stamp duty is implemented across states,” said a housing and urban affairs ministry official.
Making the country’s stringent land-conversion rules more flexible to allow easy availability of urban land is another suggestion that, if implemented, would help build city infrastructure. “…making conversion transparent and flexible would go a long way towards creating a vibrant land market in Indian cities,” the report said.
However, urban sector experts are of the view that such sweeping recommendations might not be the answer to India’s growing urbanisation and a more focused approach is required instead.
“These recommendations might or might not be in the right direction. Essentially, a broad overarching national recommendation is not a useful approach. Cities are contextual, what applies in one city might not hold good in another. Each city needs to decide what kind of growth they can facilitate and need to build local capacities accordingly,” said Professor Partho Mukhopadhyay, senior fellow, Centre for Policy Research.
The Niti Aayog has also recommended releasing substantial chunks of urban land belonging to central and state governments that have remained unused or have been encroached upon. “These vacant lands can be monetised to provide affordable housing,” said a ministry official.