The wait for your dream house may get shorter by about six months. The government is considering a proposal to grant fast-track environmental clearance to residential housing projects.

A Cabinet note to this effect is being circulated in various ministries for comments, an official in the housing ministry said. The move would help developers save 6-7 months.

However, fast-track clearance will not be extended to commercial developments or large-scale integrated township projects. “Only such group housing projects, which are proposed in R-zone (areas earmarked for residential use) of a particular city’s master plan will be covered,” he said.

“We will suggest states to amend their housing policies suitably to incentivise large-scale housing development. There is an acute shortage of housing,” he said.

The ministry, in consultation with the environment ministry, is working out a formula to enable developers get clearance in 30-45 days. At present, it takes about nine months to get environmental clearances.

Developers hailed the new initiative of the ministry as progressive, and said it will not only help them execute housing projects but also help meet shortage of housing in urban areas. “This would also save us from bureaucratic hassles. Reputed developers anyway do not violate environmental laws,” TDI managing director Kamal Taneja. Omaxe vice chairman Apoorva Joshi, however, added that the provision could be misused by some fly-by-night operators.
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