Centre to unveil home loan scheme for transgenders

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The Union Ministry of Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation (HUPA) has proposed rolling out a loan assistance scheme that will for the first time help transgenders and economically weaker sections to secure home loans in urban areas.

The Ministry has tweaked the existing Rajiv Rinn Yojna (RRY), which was launched as an instrument to aid the EWS (economically weaker sections) and LIG (lower income group) segments in urban areas, through enhanced credit flow and replaced it with a new scheme that will make it easier for the economically weaker sections and minority groups to own homes.

The RRY launched by the UPA government with much fanfare failed to take off and funds earmarked for it lapsed. The Ministry has now not only given it a new name — HOMES (Home Owners Mortgage Equity Subvention Scheme) but has also made it more attractive by enhancing the loan amount and increasing the interest subsidy from 5 per cent to 5.5 per cent on loans granted to construct houses or extend the existing ones.

To begin with, applicants will no longer have to run from pillar to post to get an income certificate, in keeping with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s direction for allowing self attestation, the Ministry has decided to do away with seeking a certification from government officials.

Reasons for failure

“One of the major reasons why the scheme failed is because applicants had to secure an income certificate from local revenue officials, who were reluctant to do the job. This will now be replaced with self attestation as announced by the Prime Minister,” said an official, not wishing to be named.

Hike in income slab

The income slab has also been increased for eligible categories which include women, widows, SC/STs, persons with disabilities and transgenders; from the existing Rs. one lakh for EWS, the income group will now be extended to Rs. 2 lakh and for the LIG category it will be up by a lakh to Rs. 3 lakh per annum.

The size of the dwellings has been increased too for both the categories. The new scheme that will be sent for Cabinet’s approval soon, has enhanced the loan amount for the EWS category from the existing Rs. 5 lakh to Rs.10 lakh and for the LIG category from Rs. 8 lakh to Rs. 15 lakh for a period of 20 years. Housing and Urban Development Corporation and National Housing Bank have been designated as the Central Nodal Agencies for the Scheme.

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