Set up in 1960, the Housing Board has built 1,05,088 homes in the State. But now it is struggling to survive.
State-owned Andhra Pradesh Housing Board, the pioneer of real estate business concept and affordable houses scheme in the State, is struggling for its existence now. Stiff competition from private real estate majors coupled with the lackadaisical government attitude are causes for it, sources say.
The Board which earned profits and had surplus funds till 2005 is now looking eagerly for help. The problems for the corporation began when the State government took off about Rs.2,700 crore from its coffers since 2005. The board had earned this amount through its profit making business of construction and selling of houses, commercial complexes and plots.
The Board was set up in the year 1960, almost 52 years ago, with the sole objective of providing affordable houses to middle income and marginal people in the State. Within a span of few years, it earned a good name for itself with its revolutionary practices in the realty sector. Since its inception the board had constructed a total of 1,05,088 units in all 23 districts of the State. These houses are constructed in various categories and formats keeping in mind the affordability factor. In Hyderabad alone, the board has so far constructed a total of 16,601 houses for the public.
But now the situation seems to be grim for the corporation as many of its ongoing projects are in trouble. While many completed projects have no takers for various reasons like inflation and recession, the ongoing projects have been stalled for want of funds from the State government. Commenting on the status of the board, one senior official said that the board is in debt. “We took a loan of Rs.175 crore from Hudco to clear our earlier debts. Now our situation is such that we are finding it difficult to pay this debt,” he said. Frequent requests from the board to the government did not evince any response from the government.