The second phase of the Indian Housing Project for construction of 43,000 housing units in Northern and Eastern Province, which is being jointly implemented by the governments of India and Sri Lanka, has made rapid progress since its launch on 2nd October 2012.
Indian High Commission in Colombo Thursday said in a release that over 8,700 beneficiaries have already been selected in all five districts of Northern Province through rigorous application of selection processes agreed upon by the two governments. The High Commission of India has released first installment payments to these beneficiaries.
Nearly 25 percent of these beneficiaries have also received their second installment payments indicating progress in construction of the house beyond the foundation stage.
The two governments are confident of achieving the target of completing 10,000 houses in Northern Province before the end of this year.
During his recent visit to Northern Province on 23-24 February, High Commissioner of India Ashok K. Kantha reviewed progress of this phase of the Project. He visited some of the houses completed under the Project in Kilinochchi district and expressed satisfaction on progress of the work.
During his visit and on his return to Colombo, High Commissioner also had extensive discussions with various stakeholders, including community organizations and civil society groups. On 2nd March, the High Commissioner reviewed progress of the Project with the Implementing Agencies.
Among other things, the recent concerns expressed by some groups in Vavuniya and Mannar districts of Northern Province over alleged discrimination in selection of beneficiaries were also looked into during these discussions.
The beneficiary selection activities under the Indian Housing Project are being carried out jointly by the Implementing Agencies appointed by the Government of India and local officials of the Government of Sri Lanka.