Dismantling the permit raj in housing4 min read . Updated: 28 Mar 2017, 03:26 AM IST
Stringent land-use regulations have been a major source of housing market distortions in Indian cities
India’s cities faced a shortage of nearly 19 million homes in 2012, 95% of which were in the economically weaker section and low income group segment. In fact, the government’s slum census of 2011 found that one in six urban residents was living in conditions that were “unfit for human habitation". Mumbai has some of the highest price-to-income ratios in the world, as a result of which the average living space in Mumbai was just 48 sq. ft per person as of 2009. For context, the US government mandates a minimum of 50 sq. ft per prisoner for prison cells. While the precise numbers can be debated, there is no doubt that the extent of shortage in urban India is high.