Congress govt mulling to sell Housing Board properties to generate revenue

The Congress government is gearing up to generate revenue by selling Housing Board properties, including approximately 600 acres of land and 300 shops. Following the Minister’s directives, officials have prepared proposals and submitted a detailed report to the Secretariat.

Decades ago, the Housing Board was established with the goal of developing affordable housing colonies for the poor and middle classes. Colonies like KPHB, Ameerpet, and ECIL were created to fulfill this mission. Over time, the government furthered its commitment to housing by establishing a housing corporation for constructing free houses for the poor and the middle class. 

Housing Board has a total of 4,609 acres of land in Hyderabad and its environs. Of this, 3,820 acres have already been developed into colonies. The remaining 789 acres are under consideration, with 80 acres entangled in legal disputes. The government is actively planning to sell the cleared 610 acres. Additionally, 150 acres are under lease, 100 acres were allocated to JNTU, and the rest were distributed to various organizations and individuals, some of which are facing legal challenges.

In terms of commercial properties, there are 300 shops located in MJ Road, Mahabubganj, Bashirpally, Vigyanpuri, Vengalarao Nagar, Barkatpura, and other city areas. These shops, due to a lack of rent revisions over the years, are generating nominal income. In 2005, the government attempted to sell these shops, resulting in the sale of 11 shops at the then market value. However, further sales were halted for various reasons.

Given the soaring land prices in the city, constructing affordable housing colonies under the Housing Board may no longer be viable. Even if the government were to proceed with building and selling colonies at discounted rates, challenges in beneficiary selection would persist. To generate revenue for the proposed Indiramma Illu scheme, the government is turning to its assets and lands.