Banam Tariya, a daily wage-earner, along with his wife and four children used to live in a hut, which lacked a toilet and proper ventilation, in Singam Cheruvu Tanda, a slum near Nacharam in Hyderabad.
Tejawat Ravi, who runs a small fancy store, has a family of nine members, including his wife, six daughters and one son. The sole breadwinner of the family, he and his family used to live in wretched conditions in the slum.
But on Saturday the jaded faces of several people with similar stories were glowing as they entered the new double bedroom apartments sanctioned for their families by the Telangana government.
It was a dream come true of sorts for as many as 176 Lambada families from Singam Cheruvu Tanda as they moved into their newly-built 2BHK houses in the same area. The residents, most of who hail from the tribal community, erupted in joy.
‚ÄúOur woes have come to an end and we can now lead a comfortable life,‚ÄĚ Banam Tariya said in a choked voice.
Even though the new accommodations are still small for them, many said that they still considered it ‚Äėdignity housing‚Äô.
Every apartment is furnished with two bedrooms, a hall, kitchen and two toilets. Even though they are small in size, the beneficiaries said that they were bestowed to them with much-needed dignity, the very purpose of conceiving the flagship 2BHK housing scheme by the TRS government.
Redya Dhanji, a daily-wage earner, who recently got married and has a son, says that he is the happiest man after getting a double-bedroom apartment from the government absolutely free of cost. For him, it is indeed a luxury, he says.
Municipal Administration and Urban Development Minister KT Rama Rao inaugurated the 2BHK apartments on Saturday, following which the new house owners conducted their individual house-warming ceremonies.
‚ÄúThe slum, the otherwise unnoticed area by anyone till now, has now been transformed into what looks like a posh gated community with all the necessary amenities ‚Äď safe drinking water, power supply, CC roads, a playground for kids and what not. They now say goodbye to packed streets filled with filth and stench,‚ÄĚ a press release from the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) stated.
According to the release, the construction of the 176 houses, spread over 11 blocks, was undertaken at a cost of Rs 13.64 crore.
Addressing the gathering, KTR said that several civic works to the tune of Rs 234 crore were being implemented in the Uppal Assembly constituency.
‚ÄúTelangana is the only state in the country that is spending Rs 18,000 crore for housing; constructing around 3 lakh 2BHK houses is the target. Out of this, one lakh would come under the GHMC limits while the remaining will be spread across the state,‚ÄĚ he said.
Hyderabad Mayor Bonthu Rammohan, GHMC commissioner B Janardhan Reddy, state Home Minister Nayini Narasimha Reddy, Uppal MLA NVSS Prabhakar and Malkajgiri MP Malla Reddy were among those present at the inauguration.