Slum dwellers returning to villages will get homes, loans: PM
Slum residents of Dhaka who choose to return to their village homes will receive loans and housing as assistance from the government, says Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.
The government will provide housing to those leaving the unhealthy environment in the slums and returning to villages if they do not own land there, she said, adding that, if necessary, the government will provide free food for six months.
In a video conference on Tuesday, the prime minister presented over 300 apartments in Mirpur constructed by the National Housing Authority to slum residents, who can live there as tenants.
Hasina mentioned her government's initiatives to address the housing problem for slum residents, highlighting the inhuman nature of lives lived in these areas.
"Today we're handing over 300 apartments to 300 families and we plan to hand over many more in the upcoming days. But they do have to pay rent as long as they live there," she said.
The government is providing the houses for those who do not own land in their home villages but want to return through the Asrayan Project-2.
Free food will be provided for six months to assist beneficiaries of the project to find employment opportunities and earn their living.
Those who own land will have houses constructed there as part of the government's existing 'Returning Home' programme, Hasina said. The slums have unhealthy living conditions, and the government aims to give relief to their inhabitants, she said.
"They can live in a better environment and earn their living."
The new tenants can pay the rent per month, per week or even per day, according to their own convenience.
Hasina spoke about a meeting with slum children at the Ganabhaban when the Awami League formed the government, where she learnt of their suffering and shared her experience of having a close look at the inhuman lives of slum residents.
As many as 18,000 families have returned to their village homes because of the 'Returning Home' programme, she said.
The prime minister also inaugurated five housing projects during the event, including 2,474 apartments in Dhaka and a combined office building in Madaripur, arranged by the Ministry of Housing and Public Works to mark Mujib Year.
State Minister for Housing and Public Works Sharif Ahmed and Housing and Public Works Secretary Md Shahidullah Khandaker were present at the Bangabandhu International Conference Centre for the event. -bdnews24.com