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Only 49,000 to go

India's External Affairs Minister, SM Krishna, is believed to be inspecting India's housing project during his upcoming visit to Sri Lanka with trips to Jaffna and Kilinochchi.

Handing over 1000 houses, constructed as a pilot project, Krishna is reported to be signing a memorandum of understanding regarding the building of the further 49,000 houses for internally displaced persons (IDPs) in the North-East.

The project, approved by the Indian cabinet in December 2011, is estimated to cost $260 million.

According to The Hindu newspaper, the final project plan was redrafted to ensure funds for reconstruction will be transferred from the High Commission of India directy into the bank accounts of beneficiaries of the project. The newspaper also reports that UN agencies will be employed as project management consultants.

In June 2010, India announced the construction of 50,000 houses to IDPs in the North-East, however progress has been negligble to date.

Despite proposing other project, the promised houses have failed to materialise as the Sri Lankan government announced delays, with the Minister of Economic Development Basil Rajapakse announcing that “no new buildings should be constructed under donor-funded loan and/or grant project” in the Tamil areas later the same year.

See related article:

The state is the main obstacle to developing Tamil areas - TGView - 27 Dec 2010