Cabinet okays affordable rental housing projects for urban poor
The Union Cabinet on Wednesday approved the development of affordable rental housing complexes (AHRC) for the urban poor or migrants.
 
The complexes will be built under the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana - Urban and according to the government, will benefit 3 lakh urban poor.
 
Under the initiative, existing vacant government funded housing complexes will be converted to ARHCs. Further, special incentives like use permission, 50 per cent additional floor area ratio or floor space indexand tax relief will be offered.
 
The Centre estimates Rs 600 crore of expenditure in the form of 'technology innovation grant'.
 
The initiative was announced as part of the Aatma Nirbhar Bharat economic package by the Finance Minister in May in view of the mass exodus of migrant labourers and the poor back to their villages from urban centres post the announcement of the nationwide lockdown.
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.
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    COMMENTS

    tillan2k

    4 weeks ago

    for study visit council housing of UK

    Cabinet Extends EPF Contribution of 24% for Another 3 Months till August
    The union cabinet chaired by prime minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday approved extension for the contribution, both 12% employees' share and 12% employers' share under Employees Provident Fund (EPF), totalling 24% for another three months from June to August 2020. This extension was given as part of the package announced by the government under Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana (PMGKY) or Aatmanirbhar Bharat in the light of COVID-19, a Pandemic. 
     
    For the wage months of June, July and August 2020, the scheme will cover all establishments having up to 100 employees and 90% of such employees earning less than Rs15,000 monthly wage. 
     
    This approval is in addition to the existing scheme for the wage months of March to May 2020 approved on 15 April 2020.  The total estimated expenditure for this is of Rs4,860 crore. Over 72 lakh employees in 3.67 lakh establishments will be benefitted.
     
    Salient Features:
     
    The salient features of the proposal are as under: 
     
    i. About 72.22 lakh workers working in 3.67 lakh establishments will be benefited and would likely to continue on their payrolls despite disruptions.
     
    ii. Government will provide Budgetary Support of Rs.4800 crore for the year 2020-21 for this purpose.
     
    iii. The beneficiaries entitled for 12% employers' contribution for the months of June to August 2020 under Pradhan Mantri Rozgar Protsahan Yojana (PMRPY) will be excluded to prevent overlapping benefit.
     
    iv. Due to prolonged lockdown, it was felt that businesses continue to face financial crisis as they get back to work. On 13 May 2020, the finance minister had announced extension of EPF support for business and workers for another three months or for the wage months of June, July, and August 2020.
         
    The steps taken by the government from time to time to ameliorate the hardships faced by the low paid workers are well accepted by the stakeholders, a release from Press Information Bureau (PIB) says.
     
     
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    COVID-19: Govt Removes Masks-Sanitisers from Essential Commodities List; Wide Variation in Govt Procurement
    Following a public interest litigation (PIL) in the Bombay High Court seeking a cap on the prices of N95 mask to curb hoarding and profiteering, the government has stymied the demand by simply removing masks and sanitisers from essential commodities. This essentially means that the manufacturers of masks can continue to charge the high prices that have prevailed since the COVID-19 lock-down and affects health care workers (HWCs) the most.
     
    On 13 March 2020, the Union ministry of consumer affairs, food and public distribution issued an order for regulating production, quality, distribution, logistics of masks (two-ply, three-ply surgical masks and N95 masks) and hand sanitisers and further prevented hoarding, black marketing and profiteering on these items. 
     
    A 1 July 2020 office memorandum (OM) issued by the department of consumer affairs ended this, saying, “...as on date there are no adverse reports from states or union territories (UTs) with respect to price or availability to continue face masks and hand sanitizers as essential commodities. Therefore, this department had decided not to continue these items as essential commodities under the essential commodities under the EC Act beyond 30 June 2020."
     
    Curiously, on that very day, media reports said that the Maharashtra government planned to bring masks under price control. But more on that later. 
     
     
    A PIL filed by Sucheta Dalal and Anjali Damania had already exposed how the regulator argued for not capping prices and had even avoided following its own rules.
     
    In June, the Bombay High Court (BHC) had asked the National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) to relook and pass appropriate order within 10 days about capping price of N95 masks, in accordance with law, as per clause 20 of the Drug Price Control Order (DPCO). The time limit set by the Court ended on 23rd June. (Read- N95 Masks: Bombay HC Asks Union Govt and NPPA To Cap Prices in 2 Weeks )
     
    The BHC bench of chief justice Dipankar Datta and justice SS Shinde said in their order that “The NPPA cannot allow an increase in the price of a drug beyond 10% of the price in the preceding 12 months, so long as the statute is there. It cannot be left to the manufacturers.”
     
    In fact, NPPA issued an office memorandum permitting manufacturers to use already high prices in April 2020 as the base to pretend a voluntary reduction in prices. This is astonishing, considering that the government-owned Haffkine Institute in Mumbai has purchased N95 masks at Rs17.33 (the wholesale price at which Haffkine Institute had procured N95 masks in February 2020) from Venus and the Mumbai municipal corporation continues to purchase them at Rs 42 (the same price at which Moneylife Foundation had procured them), while NPPA seemed satisfied with a ‘reduced’ price that was significantly higher.  
     
    Ms Damania, in her rejoinder filed in court had said, “Maharashtra Food and Drugs Administration (FDA)’s letter dated 15 May 2020, clearly show that though the MRP of N95 masks have been bloated to Rs199 per mask, the average rate charged of the said masks was Rs28.57 per mask in the fourth quarter of financial year 2019-2020 and had increased to Rs42.95 per mask and Rs46.40 per mask in the months of April and May 2020 respectively. Thus, it is clear that the MRP as set by the manufacturers are almost 300% higher than the average price at which these masks were being sold. Thus, it is no surprise that these manufacturers have been more than willing to reduce these MRP by close to 50% without any protest.”
     
    A newspaper report from Lokmat, revealed that there are 14 different prices of N95 masks being sold at 14 different places in Maharashtra. The Latur district administration bought 10,000 N95 masks at Rs42 per piece, while the same mask was bought at Rs230 per piece by Sindhudurg district administration. 
     
    According to the Lokmat report, state government-run Haffkine Institute had bought triple-layer masks at Rs0.84 per piece. However, the lowest price paid by district administrations in Maharashtra is Rs3.20 paid by Satara. Mira Bhayandar Municipal Corp bought 10,000 triple layer masks at a whopping price of Rs40 per mask. 
     
     
    (Source: Lokmat)
                                               
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    COMMENTS

    m.prabhu.shankar

    4 weeks ago

    What kind of Government is this ? In a pandemic like COVID-19 where masks, sanitizers, face shields are the key components required for every citizen to protect him or herself from death, govt says its not an essential item. Meaning my crony industrialists need to benefit through which I will also benefit from the money through electoral bonds irrespective of the death of the citizens who actually voted this government to power. God, please save my country from this government.

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