After staying long in the making, the first Tamil Nadu Affordable Urban Housing and Habitat Policy has been finally notified and it has been in the public realm for a few weeks now. Coming as it does, at a time when housing prices are steeply increasing, and owning or renting a house is possible only in far peripheries, the policy is a significant step. It has noble intentions and expands housing possibilities, including transit and rental housing for migrant workers. While this is a plus, in the absence of any reliable stock-taking, a clear statement of the problem and reassuring solutions, there are serious questions about the policy’s effectiveness.
Avowed objectives of the policy are three — first, the government will henceforth provide housing only for the very poor and ease its financial burden; second, it