Habitat for Humanity India’s Urban Dialogue Unites Key Government Officials and Experts to Forge Inclusive and Resilient Housing Solutions

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New Delhi: Habitat for Humanity India, a leading housing non-profit organisation, successfully concluded the Urban Dialogue event focused on addressing policy solutions for adequate housing to build inclusive and resilient urban settlements. The event, held in New Delhi, garnered significant attention and participation from key Government officials and industry experts in the housing and development sector.

Shri. Rajiv Ranjan Mishra, IAS (Retired), Former Director General, National Mission for Clean Ganga and Chief Technical Advisor, National Institute of Urban Affairs; Shri. G. Mathi Vathanan, IAS, Principal Secretary, Housing and Urban Development Department, Government of Odisha; Shri. Ajay Jain, IAS, Special Chief Secretary (Housing), Government of Andhra Pradesh; Parul Agarwala, Country Programme Manager, India, United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat); and Vineet Chattree, Managing Director, Svatantra Micro Housing Finance Corporation Ltd., were some of the key speakers at the event among other notable figures from the sector.

“Housing is at the centre of the New Urban Agenda, underpinning its three transformative commitments that encompass strengthening housing alongside urban infrastructure and essential services. Bolstering policy frameworks and legislation, enhancing investment and financial support, improving governance, and embracing innovations, new technologies and capacity building are the key facets that underscore our commitment to achieving inclusive and resilient urban housing solutions,” said Shri. Rajiv Ranjan Mishra, IAS (Retired), Former Director General, National Mission for Clean Ganga and Chief Technical Advisor, National Institute of Urban Affairs.

James Samuel, National Director (Interim), Habitat for Humanity India, commented on the success of the event, stating, “Habitat believes in building healthy housing ecosystems which support safe, decent homes with better sanitation, ease of access to water and better community facilities to build a healthier India. Our work complements the Government of India’s Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (PMAY). Globally, Habitat focuses on the eleventh United Nations Sustainable Development Goal – Making Cities and Human Settlements Inclusive, Safe, Resilient and Sustainable. The depth of insights and collaborative spirit we witnessed at the Urban Dialogue has given us the confidence that the goal of Housing for All is within our reach.”

Key highlights of the Urban Dialogue included discussions on inclusive urban development, addressing land ownership issues in urban poor communities, and the role of housing policies, such as PMAY and public-private partnerships, in meeting the growing demand for housing. The event also shed light on the economic significance of housing in India, and its positive impact on the GDP, life expectancy, health, education, and human development.

The impact of climate change on urban areas and housing infrastructure was a prominent topic, stressing the need for sustainable building practices to ensure effective housing solutions. Customised solutions tailored to the diverse housing needs of underprivileged communities, housing finance, green technology, and the importance of inclusivity and resilience in urban planning were also key takeaways from the event.

The Urban Dialogue was organised by Habitat for Humanity India in collaboration with the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat), International Finance Corporation (IFC), and Sphere India.