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Noida doles out interest-free loans in slum rehab scheme

In a bid to make the city slum-free, the Noida Authority tweaked its ambitious slum rehabilitation scheme by changing a norm relating to its cost pattern. It has decided to provide interest-free, long-term loan to slum-dwellers to enable them to buy economically weaker section (EWS) flats, priced around Rs 5.15 lakh.

This project, which was in cold storage for the last four years, will be relaunched this month. The first phase of the scheme is likely to provide houses to nearly 3,400 families belonging to EWS category.

Officials said the move to waive off a 4 <g data-gr-id="31">per cent</g> interest rate on installment payments was taken at a meeting with members of the association of slum-dwellers on Tuesday. “Now, the members have agreed to participate in the scheme, which will be through a draw of lots. It should be launched in July and flats, which are already ready for possession in Sector 122, will be allotted soon after,” Akhilesh Singh, additional CEO of Noida Authority, said.

He added: “With the rehabilitation scheme, which is to accommodate about 11,565 families, we will be able to free land in Sectors 8, 9 and 10 in the heart of Noida. This allotment will be done block-wise and the possession of the vacated land will be taken by us. This land will then be put to various uses, including building parks, parking lots, roads, etc.”

In a meeting of the Authority, it had been decided that plots measuring 29 square metres be given to all slum-dwellers. Thereafter, a survey was undertaken by the Authority to identify the number of slum-dwellers. It had at the time found more than 11,000 EWS families residing in sectors 8, 9 and 10.

A JJ Dwellers Resettlement Scheme was launched in 2011 and flats constructed by the Authority in Sector 122. These four-level units, of two rooms <g data-gr-id="37">each</g> <g data-gr-id="35">have</g> been priced at Rs 4.5 to Rs 5.15 lakhs to be collected in installments over a 20-year period.

However, members of the community had alleged that the actual number of families living in slums was much higher and that the scheme had been launched to benefit a few influential individuals. After addressing their objections, it was also decided to waive off a 4 <g data-gr-id="29">per cent</g> interest rate on installment payments.

“We have also informed the members to avail of the newly launched home loan scheme of the Centre to make it easier for them to procure these homes,” Singh said.
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