Low income urban slum dwellers given houses

Saturday, 20 September 2014 00:03 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

The newly-constructed ‘Puradora Sewana’ housing scheme in Orugodawatte, Colombo was declared open by the Ministry of Defence and Urban Development Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa recently. After unveiling a commemorative plaque, he declared open the new urban housing scheme. The complex of four, two-storied housing blocks comprises 34 houses. Houses were handed over to selected low income urban families who lived under difficult conditions. These houses, facing Baseline Road, contain all amenities including proper sanitary facilities. Addressing the beneficiaries, Rajapaksa mentioned that: “Over 5000 such housing units have been completed out of 20,000 units that are being constructed.” Amongst them a large number of housing units have been vested on low income squatters during the year,” he said. He further stated that: “At the outset, the Opposition made an attempt to disrupt the project, criticising that the Government’s intention is to drive out these shanty dwellers from Colombo to the countryside. “But, in accordance with the ‘Mahinda Chintana Policy Manifesto’, the Government’s intention was to relocate shanty dwellers within the Colombo District itself into a much better environment bringing immense benefits to them,” he recalled. Further elaborating on easy payment arrangements, he went on to say that: “Not even 10% of the cost of a house would be recovered even in a span of 20 years’ time. Furthermore, financial aid has also been granted to those with financial constraints. Meanwhile, in some cases philanthropists too extended their supportive hands willingly.”