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Ministry disbursed Rs. 1.136 bn

The Housing and Construction Ministry has disbursed Rs. 1.136 billion for housing projects in the Anuradhapura district from 2015 to 2017. The number of beneficiary families is 12,834.

During the particular period, under the Wisiri Housing loan scheme, Rs. 373.85 million had been awarded to 4,265 families, whereas 1,060 families were granted Rs. 108.53 million under the Sampath Sevana programme. A sum of Rs. 204 million had been offered to 604 beneficiaries under the kidney patients' housing project. As a full-scale gratuity, each family was awarded Rs. 500,000 for construction work, under the supervision and technical guidance of the Anuradhapura National Housing Development Authority (NHDA), Anuradhapura NHDA Senior Manageress Dewika Wijerathne said.

''It was revealed in a recent NHDA survey, that the new housing requirements in Anuradhapura district, are 168,492 housing units. A number of 18,977 families have been living in temporary huts, thatched and tin-roofed houses. There are 22,154 low-income families who are either having a plot of land for housing, but unable to afford for it and those who do not own any land whatsoever. There are 27,403 half-done houses, while 95,182 require plastering. The number of families living in rented houses is 37,70, while 1,913 families dwell in government quarters, Wijeratne added.

At the aforementioned survey, attention had been focussed on infra-structural deficiencies as well. There are 8,057 families who are deprived of electricity. Two thousand twenty-three families lack approach road facilities, whereas 13,222 families are deprived of sanitation facilities. It had also been reported that 64,122 families have no access to potable drinking water.

Plans to address the said issues are currently underway, in collaboration with relevant government agencies such as the National Water Supply and Drainage Board (NWSDB), Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) and Road Development Authority (RDA).